MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

May 20, 2013

Event center close; NSU expects facility to open in mid-September

TAHLEQUAH — A year after beginning construction on a sprawling multipurpose event center, Northeastern State University staff is excited as it nears completion.

“We feel like its on schedule,” said NSU Vice President for Operations Tim Foutch. “We’re projecting a mid-September opening.”

The 78,200-square-foot building is set to be completed at a cost of $14.4 million. It’s being built on the corner of Grand Avenue and North Street, just south of Doc Wadley Stadium.

Once completed, the center will host:

• Retractable seating.

• NCAA regulation volleyball court.

• NCAA regulation basketball court.

• Athletic administration offices.

• Support infrastructure for games, tournaments and a variety of events.

• Multiple concession areas.

• Team store for apparel and fan supplies.

“Basketball practices will begin, and then in October the basketball games will begin,” Foutch said.

Other events are planned, but not technically scheduled until the facility is complete. Foutch said fall commencement will be the first major university event.   

“The building will have 3,000 actual seats fixed and movable seating that will be able to be rolled in and out,” Foutch said. “For commencement we’ll be able to put another 1,000 people on the floor itself and in some of the ancillary areas. All in all, we can put 4,200 people in it.”

Foutch said $1.5 million of an estimated $21 million tax Tahlequah voters passed in January will go toward an 8,000-square-foot “office space.”

“It will be a breakout space, with classrooms and presentation rooms that will support community and civic events,” Foutch said.

Reach Dylan Goforth at (918) 684-2903 or dgoforth@muskogeephoenix.com.

Online

Northeastern State University has a website dedicated to following the progress of construction of the multipurpose event center.

The website is at http://offices.nsuok.edu/capitalprojects/MultipurposeEventCenter.aspx.

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