New scoreboard, academic center among renovations coming to Hinkle Fieldhouse

Butler University launches fundraiser for project

INDIANAPOLIS - Changes are coming to Hinkle Fieldhouse, but Butler University officials promise not to change the things that make Hoosiers love the building.

The school announced Friday a $16 million fundraising campaign to renovate and update the iconic field house.

Work is already underway at Hinkle, with crews repairing the brick exterior and replacing nearly 10,000 window panes.

The fundraising campaign will enable the university to extend the renovations inside, with a plan for major updates and improvements, although those improvements will not change the field house's iconic look or character.

Athletic Director Barry Collier said people love Hinkle, so the school doesn't want to change it too much, but they want to add amenities while making sure that it lasts another 85 years.

"We're going to make the building up-to-speed with mechanical, extra plumbing. We're also going to enhance the student-athlete experience and the fan experience."

For student-athletes, that will include a new academic center, strength and conditioning rooms and a sports medicine center. Fans will get more comforts with a new scoreboard with video capability, more chair-back seats and additional restrooms.

"In preserving and updating the field house, we will honor its place as a state and national landmark," said Butler President James Danko. "We will also ensure that the field house will serve student-athletes and all Hoosiers for generations to come."

Some will view the new facilities as a recruiting strength as Butler moves up to a tougher conference, but basketball coach Brad Stevens said that isn't the reason he's so happy with the plan.

"I'm more concerned about the 350-plus student-athletes that we have at Butler," Stevens said. "I think it's great for them to have the best facilities they can have. I love the idea of a more spacious weight room. I think we need that. I think we need a training room that's more up-to-date so that our football players all aren't on top of each other getting ready to be taped 20 at a time."

The school has already raised nearly $12 million from private and corporate sources. 

Interior work will begin next year, and the school hopes to be finished sometime in 2014.

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