Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Friday, March 16, 2012

Regents approve increase in Yost budget and Crisler renaming

The Board of Regents approved a pair of building initiatives at its meeting Thursday. The board approved the increase in the cost of construction for Yost Ice Arena from $14 million to $16 million and voted for the name change of Crisler Arena to Crisler Center.

"The renovation project will modernize Yost Ice Arena while retaining its classic look and maintaining the great atmosphere that we all enjoy," said Dave Brandon, the Donald R. Shepherd Director of Athletics. "Our fans will receive a better game day experience that includes more food options, a new bleacher system, more premium seating options and an improved sound system."

The Yost renovations will focus on replacing the east, west and south bleachers along with adding seating to meet provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The department will add Champions Boxes on the current media level and create a new fifth level for media. The east and west concourses will get a lighting upgrade, new concession stands and additional storage.

In addition, a food commissary will be added to the northeast corner of the building to service the concession stands and the premium seating areas. There will be infrastructure improvements, as well as the replacement of all exterior windows that will allow natural light into the arena.

Construction begins at the end of March but the team will be able to utilize the ice and its locker room area until the end of its NCAA Tournament run. The exact seating capacity after renovations is unknown at this time, but the athletic department expects the venue to seat close to 5,800 fans.

During their monthly meeting, the regents also formally approved the name change of Crisler Arena to Crisler Center. The change reflects the addition of multi-functional spaces, offices for the basketball teams, practice courts, strength and conditioning space, club amenities, a ticket office and a state-of-the-art television production studio.

"Crisler is truly becoming a multi-purpose facility for our athletic department," Brandon said. "We will have a beautiful arena, player development center and plenty of rental space available to the public."

Construction will continue at Crisler Center through fall 2012.