Oct 18, 2010
New Mexico Open ‘New Pit’

UNM basketball fans, meet your new Pit.
Still “a mile high and louder than …, University Arena will have fans’ ears ringing even more with a state-of-the-art sound system. Eliminating The Pit’s mezzanine levels also made room for 40 suites, and UNM got a liquor license to serve alcohol only at the suite level.
High glass walls and stone alabaster tiles provide the structure’s base.

The editions helped the contractor reach a LEED silver rating for energy efficiency, and 95 percent of construction waste materials were recycled, according to the Pit renovation fact sheet.

“I have tried telling everyone else how spectacular it is, UNM head men’s basketball coach Steve Alford said. “Our guys are very excited about moving into the best venue in college basketball.”

The $40 million loan the Athletics Department took out to finish funding the project will be repaid through naming license agreements on various concourse stands and the arena. Almost two-thirds of the loan will be recouped through sales of the 40 suites and 365 club seats, said Tim Cass, senior associate athletics director.

Already widely considered one of the best basketball venues in the nation, The Pit now has more parking spaces and a drop-off circle at the east entrance.

But Lobo fans, don’t stare too long; it’s what’s inside that counts. While official seating capacity is slightly lower (17, 126), more than 75, 000 square feet of space has been added for accessibility.

Banners of former Lobos Danny Granger and Luc Longley hang inside The Pit. Two more-than-24-foot video screens hang from the north and south mezzanine levels.

Alford said the fan’s experience will be elevated to professional heights, and home team player introductions will be theatrical.
Not only that, but concession stands have tripled, and fans can choose food from a Mexican grill, a pizzeria and a sandwich shop.
“I think it’s nice, junior guard Phillip McDonald said. Coach hasn’t taken us in yet, but he will eventually. From the outside of the building, I like it, and I think it’s one of the best facilities I have been in.”

So far, Athletics has sold 38 suites priced at $40, 000 a year, and the suites require a three-year minimum contract agreement, according to the fact sheet. Each has a flat screen television, plush leather seats, a bar and a hanging view of the action below.

“The electronics in the new Pit is something that we’re really excited about, Alford said. I think that was something missing in the old Pit. … I think during nonconference it will be cool to watch what the rest of the league is doing. Our fans can now follow that on the scoreboards, and we are fortunate enough to crack the top 25 again like we did last year. What are the other top-25 teams doing in the country?”


New Mexico Open ‘New Pit’

From dailylobo.com

UNM basketball fans, meet your new Pit. Still “a mile high and louder than …, University Arena will have fans’ ears ringing even more with a state-of-the-art sound system. Eliminating The Pit’s mezzanine levels also made room for 40 suites, and UNM got a liquor license to serve alcohol only at the suite level. High glass walls and stone alabaster tiles provide the structure’s base.

The editions helped the contractor reach a LEED silver rating for energy efficiency, and 95 percent of construction waste materials were recycled, according to the Pit renovation fact sheet.

“I have tried telling everyone else how spectacular it is, UNM head men’s basketball coach Steve Alford said. Our guys are very excited about moving into the best venue in college basketball.”

The $40 million loan the Athletics Department took out to finish funding the project will be repaid through naming license agreements on various concourse stands and the arena. Almost two-thirds of the loan will be recouped through sales of the 40 suites and 365 club seats, said Tim Cass, senior associate athletics director.

Already widely considered one of the best basketball venues in the nation, The Pit now has more parking spaces and a drop-off circle at the east entrance.

But Lobo fans, don’t stare too long; it’s what’s inside that counts. While official seating capacity is slightly lower (17, 126), more than 75, 000 square feet of space has been added for accessibility.

Banners of former Lobos Danny Granger and Luc Longley hang inside The Pit. Two more-than-24-foot video screens hang from the north and south mezzanine levels.

Alford said the fan’s experience will be elevated to professional heights, and home team player introductions will be theatrical. Not only that, but concession stands have tripled, and fans can choose food from a Mexican grill, a pizzeria and a sandwich shop. “I think it’s nice, junior guard Phillip McDonald said. Coach hasn’t taken us in yet, but he will eventually. From the outside of the building, I like it, and I think it’s one of the best facilities I have been in.”

So far, Athletics has sold 38 suites priced at $40, 000 a year, and the suites require a three-year minimum contract agreement, according to the fact sheet. Each has a flat screen television, plush leather seats, a bar and a hanging view of the action below.

“The electronics in the new Pit is something that we’re really excited about, Alford said. I think that was something missing in the old Pit. … I think during nonconference it will be cool to watch what the rest of the league is doing. Our fans can now follow that on the scoreboards, and we are fortunate enough to crack the top 25 again like we did last year. What are the other top-25 teams doing in the country?”






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