UT's Thompson-Boling Arena Renovations to Begin in January

Published: Dec. 8, 2016 at 3:54 AM EST
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The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is set to begin a new phase of renovation work at Thompson-Boling Arena in January, most notably overhauling locker room facilities used for athletic and special events at the 30-year-old riverfront venue.

The university is working with the Studio Four Design architecture firm on the project. A general contractor will be selected later this month.

The project will begin with the addition of four new locker rooms to the west side of the arena. This space will be used by visiting basketball teams, the Tennessee volleyball program, and special events at the arena, such as concerts.

Then in May, workers will begin an extensive renovation to the existing men's and women's basketball locker rooms along the arena's north corridor on the event level. Both areas will be enlarged and modernized with state-of-the-art technological and aesthetic enhancements. In addition, an expanded and enhanced athletic training facility, featuring new world-class hydrotherapy systems, will be completed for use by both basketball programs.

"These facilities will greatly improve the student-athlete experience at Thompson-Boling Arena, making it second to none," Arena Manager Tim Reese said. "The building will be upgraded tremendously, the team and athletic training areas will be top notch, and the renovations will have an incredibly positive impact on the student-athletes who train, compete and spend so much of their time here."

Visitors to the arena will notice an increased number of public restrooms along the concourse on the east and west ends of the arena along with the repair and renovation of existing restrooms.

"These changes bring several environment benefits," Reese said. "We'll be greatly reducing the amount of water used in restrooms while expanding available space for visitors to the building."

Public parking for events at the arena will not be affected during the renovation work.

"As work is ongoing, visitors to the arena may observe some of the construction in progress, but arena events will not be impacted and no closure is expected," Reese said.

Thompson-Boling Arena opened in the fall of 1987 and is now in its 30th year hosting on-campus events. During that time, the venue has welcomed and served more than 24 million patrons.