Auburn Arena, Auburn basketball’s home court, will be receiving a $3 million renovation, approved by the University’s Board of Trustees Friday morning.
The plans focus primarily on locker room enhancement, intending to add a new locker room entrance, locker room, lounge and team space for men’s basketball. The women’s team is set to receive a new locker room entrance.
Both squads will be beneficiaries of 6,700 square feet of general arena enhancements.
A combination of gifts and athletic department funds are set to cover the budget of the project, which is expected to be completed by October 2019 after starting in April 2019.
"The Auburn family is a passionate group demonstrated by its generous philanthropy in support of these capital projects," Auburn athletic director Allen Greene said in a statement. "I applaud President Leath and the Board of Trustees for their unwavering commitment to invest in the holistic experience of our student-athletes. The linchpin to sustained success is the constant improvement of our physical footprint, including facility upgrades and new construction.
"Broadly speaking, our student-athletes deserve to train in world-class facilities and our fans expect a ‘best-in-class’ game day experience. As we raise the bar within our conference and beyond, our journey to create and execute a facilities master plan that excites the Auburn fan base is unequivocally in motion."
The Tigers moved from Beard-Eaves Memorial Coliseum to their new $86 million home for the 2010-11 season. The arena maxes out at 9,121 fans, including 1,500 floor-level seats for the so-called “Jungle,” Auburn’s rabid and rambunctious student section.
"I'm grateful to the Board of Trustees, President Leath and our Director of Athletics for continuing to invest in our basketball program," Auburn men's basketball head coach Bruce Pearl said in a statement. "As we gain credibility and competitiveness, we're attracting high level student-athletes and we need to provide the space and facilities to help train them. These improvements will go a long way toward that end."
Last season, Auburn men’s basketball won its first SEC Championship since 1999 en route to its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2003. The Tigers turned in a 15-1 record in front of their home crowd.
Auburn women’s basketball has enjoyed four NCAA postseason appearances since the new arena was opened, including a pair of NCAA Tournament bids under four-year head coach Terri Williams-Flournoy.