The University of Kentucky on Monday unveiled a few renderings of what a renovated Memorial Coliseum would look like after an estimated $15 million in upgrades.
The renderings reveal what a new $2.2 million “Club Area” in the north end zone would look like. The club area would go in the space where the old video board sat and where bleacher seating has gone unused for years after the construction of the adjacent Joe Craft Center.
They also reveal blue chair-back seats in the west half of the bowl and blue bleacher benches in the east half, turning the brown, wooden seating area into a thoroughly blue and white theme, especially with new white ceiling tiles.
The seating changes are estimated to cost roughly $1.7 million.
Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart said in May the first priorities for renovating Memorial would include an estimated $3 million in heating and air conditioning upgrades, the new video and sound systems and the seating bowl. Memorial is famously hot and muggy in the late summer and early fall when the volleyball team begins its schedule.
Replacing the stained ceiling tiles would cost an estimated $1 million. A feasibility study commissioned by UK Athletics also outlined improvements to the bathrooms, new lighting, and other upgrades.
UK launched a new capital campaign last month aimed at improving and building new facilities for several of its programs. A time line for the completion of all the work at Memorial has not been set, but the new giant video board in the south end is near completion.
Memorial Coliseum opened in 1950 and served as the home to the men’s basketball team for 25 years. It’s currently home to many athletics department offices and the primary venue for women’s basketball and volleyball.