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University arena plans in works

Troy University’s plans to build a new multi-purpose sports arena won’t just come at the cost of money— it’ll also compromise the university’s golf course.

Bonds were approved for the arena’s construction in July as part of a $63 million bond issue that will fund the arena, fraternity village and a new dining hall.

Athletic Director Steve Dennis said plans for the arena, which will house a new basketball gym, volleyball court, offices and commencement area, are in the architectural stages.

Those architectural plans will place the facility on the Trojan Oaks Golf Course number nine fairway.

As of now, the golf course remains open to the public, Dennis said.

“We are not closing it until we start digging,” Dennis said.

With goals that are “ambitious,” Dennis said the beginning stages could come as early as the beginning of 2011.

His hopes are the arena will be ready for the fall 2011 basketball season.

“That’s ambitious, so it could be anywhere from fall 2011 to spring 2012,” Dennis said.

Dennis said the university’s golf team will relocate to the Troy Country Club.

He had no figures available on how many local residents and students use the golf course to play for leisure. Senior Vice Chancellor of Financial Chancellor for Financial Affairs Jim Bookout could not be reached for those figures by the time of press.

Dennis said he isn’t certain exactly how plans will go at this time.

“Right now we’re just working on the building and the parking lot,” Dennis said.

Dennis said the specifics of the building design aren’t ready to be released. An additional parking lot will built adjacent to the arena and will extend into McKinley Drive.

Specifics of those plans aren’t ready just yet either.

Once plans are complete, they will go to the chancellor and then before the Board of Trustees for the final OK.

The next time the board is scheduled to meet is Dec. 11, following the university’s fall commencement ceremony.