Carver renovations nearing completion - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Carver renovations nearing completion

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CORALVILLE (KWWL) -

Hawkeye fans will soon have something new to cheer about.

Crews are putting the finishing touches on a major renovation project at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

Thursday the University opened the doors for the first time to the media.
For many, the enhancements have been a long time coming.

"It's long overdue and really we did this for the student athletes," said Jane Meyer, UI Senior Associate Athletics Director.

The 27-year-old building was lagging behind the times.  Now, as crews work to finish its revitalization, the arena will be competitive with those of schools nationwide.

"It's moving back in and enjoying all those benefits of everybody's hard work in order to make sure that this program continues to move forward," Meyer said.

The progress includes an eleven-thousand square foot strength and conditioning center, new locker rooms and meeting areas, and an expanded wrestling area along with new practice gyms.

"Sometimes it's hard to get into Carver at night to shoot because there's volleyball and wrestling and all sorts of stuff, but to have somewhere where you can come 24/7 is just going to be awesome," said women's basketball player Jaime Printy.

Iowa women's basketball coach Lisa Bluder says the facility will help in recruiting.

"We've had a lot of unofficial visits come in this week, and we've toured campus but definitely the highlight is being able to tour the new faculties now," Bluder said.

But the new Carver experience will be felt beyond staff, coaches, and players.  Fans will notice improvements the moment they walk in.

"When the folks built Carver-Hawkeye Arena close to 30 years ago, there wasn't a front door. Now there's a front door," Meyer said.  "It's going to serve the fans.  When they're waiting indoors to pick up will-call tickets, they're inside."

That new fan experience includes an improved concourse, premium seating opportunities with expanded hospitality areas, and better accessibility.

Hawkeye volleyball fans will be the first to enjoy the new amenities.  Their season opens August 26th.

The ticket office at Carver is open.  Crews are expected to wrap up the majority of remaining work in the next 30 days.

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