Some Fifth Third Arena Renovation Details Revealed, UC Moving Closer To Keeping Basketball On Campus?

Dec 28, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bearcats guard Kevin Johnson (25) shoots a three point basket during the first half of the game against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Fifth Third Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rob Leifheit-USA TODAY Sports

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The Cincinnati Enquirer’s Cliff Peale dropped some bombs this afternoon with regards to the Fifth Third Arena renovations. Not only do they do, in fact, exist but the public is privy to details about them.







Even though the plans appear to be in the “proposal” stage, this is much more encouraging news about the renovation than message board chatter which is all that’s been available to us in the past. Here’s what we can derive from Peale’s tweets:

  1. Capacity would be reduced from 13,176 to 10,000. Like with Nippert Stadium and especially in college basketball, having a 25-30k-seat stadium isn’t the objective. Improving the in-game experience and pumping cash into the athletic department by way of luxury seating is. Plus, dropping capacity by ~3,000 isn’t that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things.
  2. The price tag will be somewhere between $50 million and $107 million. Obviously things could change over the course of the renovation but at least we have some actual figures to reference as opposed to rumors.
  3. Permanent seating will be the future, no more roll-away bleachers. Thank goodness for this. I’d expect the plans call for a circular design to the seating arrangement as opposed to square as it stands now.
  4. UC wants to stay on campus but are still entertaining proposals to move downtown. It’s not a bad idea to keep both options open. As follower Jeff points out, having actual plans in hand for an on campus arena could improve Cincinnati’s arrangement in a US Bank Arena deal if that should happen.

We’ll keep you updated on this as news leaks throughout the coming hours, days, and weeks.