Louisville Arena Reality

The seemingly never-ending discussions about a Louisville, Ky., arena have apparently come to an end and the city will have a downtown, 22,000-seat facility in 2010.

The University of Louisville board of trustees and the athletic association board of directors approved an outline of a deal August 22nd between the school and the Louisville Arena Authority. In the process, the university will trade in Freedom Hall for a $381 million, state-of-the-art arena.

“It’s been a long process. It’s probably been well over a year to get us to this point,” Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich said. “The great thing about it is that everybody’s on board. Certainly, not everybody got what they wanted. We’d have loved to be on campus or back here at the fairgrounds, but we wanted to be a team player in this thing.”

Louisville will hold the rights to 72 luxury suites and have priority scheduling options when the arena opens. The arena authority will hold onto the naming rights.