AUSTIN, Texas — The Frank C. Erwin Jr. Center's time on the side of Interstate 35 is coming to an end.
This week, the University of Texas System's Board of Regents approved an item paving the way for demolition of the 500,000-square-foot arena, as well as the 44,000-square-foot Denton A. Cooley Pavilion next door.
According to the item on the board's agenda, the demolition of the two facilities will make room for expansion of the Dell Medical School. The full demolition is estimated to cost $25 million, and the university hopes to finish the demolition project by October 2024.
Built in 1977, the Frank Erwin Center served as the arena for Texas Men's and Women's basketball games, as well as a concert venue and the location for UT's individual college graduations. The Denton A. Cooley Pavilion, built in 2003, has served as a basketball training facility.
Way back in December 2018, the board or regents voted to approve a new events arena to replace the Frank Erwin Center. In November 2019, the new arena got its name: Moody Center. Crews broke ground on the new arena the following month.
In February 2022, the Texas Men's Basketball played its final game at the Frank Erwin Center. In March, the women's team followed suit. The Frank Erwin Center officially closed in May 2022, according to KVUE's media partners at the Austin American-Statesman.
Since then, "The Drum" has sat empty, its marquee flashing show dates for its successor down the road. Meanwhile, the Moody Center officially opened to the public in April 2022 and recently celebrated its jam-packed first year.