The University of Texas System Board of Regents on Thursday authorized the flagship campus in Austin to partner with a company that will pay to build and then operate a $300 million basketball and multipurpose arena.
The arena, to be built at what is now a parking lot just south of Mike A. Myers Track Stadium and Soccer Field, will replace the Erwin Center, which will be torn down to accommodate expansion of UT’s Dell Medical School.
Oak View Group LLC, based in Los Angeles, will lease 6.64 acres between Red River Street and Robert Dedman Drive for construction, after which UT will own the arena. UT officials say they are not aware of another university with a similar arrangement.
The regents authorized the project at a meeting where they also elected a new chairman, Kevin Eltife, a former state senator from Tyler who has been a regent for a little less than two years. He replaces Sara Martinez Tucker as head of the governing board for 14 academic and health campuses.
UT will have control of the new arena for about 60 days a year to accommodate men’s and women’s basketball games, high school graduations and other school-related or community functions. The Oak View Group will be in charge of the facility for the rest of the time, recovering its investment from operating revenues, including concessions. After 10 years, UT will get a cut of those revenues.
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