New multipurpose arena The Pavilion opens at Ole Miss


The University of Mississippi (widely referred to as Ole Miss) has opened a new, Aecom-designed arena. The 9,500-seat, multipurpose arena will host men’s and women’s basketball games, as well as concerts, special events and academic and day-to-day student activities.

The Pavilion is the centerpiece of the Ole Miss Athletics Foundation’s Forward Together capital campaign. Situated next to Vaught-Hemingway Stadium in Oxford, Mississippi, (which is undergoing an Aecom-designed expansion and renovation as well), The Pavilion anchors an updated athletics complex near The Grove – the university’s central open space and renowned tailgating destination.

The Forward Together campaign began in 2011 and was planned in conjunction with Aecom. The campaign surpassed its original goal of US$150m in just over four years and continues toward its new goal of US$200m.

“Aecom provided an integrated perspective with market and economic analysis, long-term cost planning, extensive sports experience and exceptional design,” said Keith Carter, senior associate athletics director and executive director of the Ole Miss Athletics Foundation. “We’re very proud of their contributions to our facility projects and look forward to The Pavilion becoming a cornerstone of campus life.”

The athletics foundation worked with Aecom to maximize opportunities for fan engagement, premium seating experiences, sustainable revenue sources, student involvement and campus engagement.

“With the Forward Together campaign, Ole Miss has advanced big-picture, fiscally sound, programmatic-thinking about college athletics, not just in the conference but in the nation,” said Jon Niemuth, director of sports for Aecom. “We’re honored to have partnered with them and are thrilled to see The Pavilion ready for action.”

The Pavilion’s main entry is marked by a series of Doric columns referencing the southern traditional architectural style of the Ole Miss campus. In addition, a sweeping barrel roof affords a grand clerestory window wall which brings natural lighting directly into the seating bowl. Fans moving through the main concourse and mezzanine levels will have expansive views into the bowl. Retractable lower seating will allow for large group lectures and convocations on the event floor, and the north entry will double as a food court on non-game days.

Pic credit: Joshua McCoy/Ole Miss Athletics.

January 14, 2016

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