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Reed Green Coliseum to undergo major renovations

Sean Smith
Reed Green Coliseum

Reed Green Coliseum is getting major upgrades after the Institutions of Higher Learning approved a request by The University of Southern Mississippi to add 43.5 million dollars of upgrades and renovations to the basketball arena. The upgrades will include adding over 30,000 square feet of space as well as modernizing the existing areas in the coliseum.
The first set of additions will be the expansions done in and around the coliseum to add 33,000 square feet. Southern Miss will be adding 10,000 square feet for a new coliseum entrance with ticketing facilities inside. This will certainly help give Reed Green a more official feel, as the current area to buy physical tickets is a makeshift building in the grassy area in front of the entrance to the coliseum. There will also be approximately an all-new 20,000 square foot practice facility added. This includes a new practice court, storage areas, dressing rooms, and restrooms. New men’s and women’s family restrooms will be added to the coliseum, adding another 2,400 square feet onto Reed Green.
Finally in building additions, a new loading dock will be added that can accommodate 2-3 semi trucks, helping the ease of hosting events in the coliseum. These all are very welcome additions, and it seems as if Southern Miss is ramping up investments into Basketball after both men’s and women’s basketball made splashes in the Sun Belt Conference and nationally, with both teams hanging a banner after the end of the season.
The second and larger set of upgrades are arena improvements. The concourse will be expanded and will have added ADA seating as well as mini-suites along the concourse, totaling an additional 225 seats in the coliseum. There will also be new courtside accommodations, putting in expanded seating in the D-Zone Areas, which will account for 5,500 square feet of courtside seating improvements and upgrades. The benches and chairback seats will be getting replaced, which means approximately 6,000 seats will be replaced with new hardware. Risers, handrails, and other accessibility features will also be replaced where they exist and added where they do not to help patrons move around Reed Green with comfort and ease. Unfortunately for Southern Miss fans, the roof and ceiling are not built to hold a Jumbotron hanging from the center, but this next upgrade is a welcome second option. Southern Miss will be adding new scoreboards, a new sound system, and new LED ribbons. This means that there is a non-zero chance the video board will wrap around the coliseum roof. For the journalists covering Southern Miss basketball, they will be welcomed by renovated press and camera areas. For ease of making one’s way through the coliseum, new signage and graphics will be added throughout.
Finally, overall facility improvements will help add that final touch to fully modernize Reed Green Coliseum. The control and broadcast rooms will be completely renovated with new and improved infrastructure to improve the quality and efficiency of basketball broadcasts. There will be a renovated interview room as well as a new press lounge with food services provided, all of which are likely to pique any sports writer’s interest. The loading area will be renovated to improve access to the floor, and there will be improved storage facilities at floor level. A new freight elevator will also be installed. There will be major upgrades to mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems. Finally, the underground utility infrastructure will be relocated to accommodate for the practice facility.
There is no timetable on when these upgrades and expansions will happen, but the IHL has approved the request, so expect work to begin soon after the basketball season. Overall, Golden Eagle fans have a great deal to look forward to when it comes to the future of basketball and any and everything that takes place in Reed Green Coliseum.

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