Hoosiers Home Improvement

An aging arena at Indiana University is due for a much-needed facelift, but officials at the school haven’t jumped to begin improvements that could cost between $50 million and $123 million.

The Assembly Hall in Bloomington, home of Hoosiers basketball, opened in 1971. The facility reportedly has poor sight lines in some seats, limited seating and aisle access for the disabled, a lack of premium seats and aging mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems.

But following a recent meeting of the board of trustees, university president Steve Ferguson said he wasn’t sure if it was worth renovating the hall, and would rather leave the facility as is or start from scratch.

"It seems obvious from the [report] today that redoing this one makes no sense," Ferguson told the Indianapolis Star.

A university spokesman told Pollstar renovations aren’t likely to take place given the proposed costs. Trustees will review proposals about the hall’s eventual replacement, but that also isn’t likely to happen in the near future, he said.

Trustees did not specifically discuss how to fund an Assembly Hall project during the meeting, the Star reported, although luxury suite revenue and naming-rights deals were mentioned as ways to increase revenue and bring the hall up to speed with facilities at other schools.

"I would build a new arena in a heartbeat," trustee Philip Eskew Jr. told the paper. "People should look at us on TV and say, ‘This is the way it should be.’"