Commerce Cabinet

Press Release Date:  Monday, January 22, 2007  
Contact Information:  Amanda Storment
(502) 367-5180

LOUISVILLE, KY – The Louisville Arena Authority today approved the selection of HOK Sport to design a new downtown multi-purpose arena.


“HOK Sport has designed more than 135 arenas around the world, so we were very comfortable with their extensive knowledge of the project type,” said Dan Ulmer, who chairs the Building Committee for the Louisville Arena Authority.


HOK Sport will be paid $13,850,000 in set fees (including expenses) to design the $252 million arena.  Ulmer noted that the pay structure amounted to six percent of the total construction cost.  “The architect-design fee was originally estimated at 10 percent of the construction cost and it came in well under those projections. It’s a significant savings for this project and we’re getting the best in the business.”


The world's leading public assembly design firm, HOK Sport has worked with professional and collegiate clients around the globe.  With vast experience in arena design, HOK Sport understands the role of an arena as that of a civic icon.  The firm’s noted arena work includes 56 collegiate arenas; 48 civic arenas; and 32 professional arenas such as the Gaylord Entertainment Center in Nashville, United Center in Chicago, Pepsi Center in Denver; Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul; Toyota Center in Houston; Sprint Center in Kansas City; and Prudential Center in Newark.


Louisville’s 22,000 seat, 700,000 square foot arena will feature multiple amenities, including a team store, restaurant, 72 private suites, and a University of Louisville Alumni Room, along with a practice basketball court. The design team will consider sustainable design elements within the parameters of the project budget. 


 “The visible waterfront site provides an opportunity for us to create a signature design for the city of Louisville,” said Steve Hotujac, AIA, principal in charge of the project. “As we start the design process, we seek to understand the city’s distinctions and then interpret that into the arena’s design.”  HOK will work closely with the city’s development and planning agencies, and seeks public input through the Louisville Arena Authority website,


There are several local businesses on the architect-design team, including Louis & Henry Group, Rangaswamy & Associates (MBE Structural) and Swope Design Group (interior design).  



“In addition to HOK’s experience and their ability to provide a strong project team, they are committed to meeting our Affirmative Action Policy,” said Ulmer.  The authority’s policy sets a goal of 20 percent minority-owned business participation, including five percent participation by women-owned businesses.