Rupp Arena Faces Crossroads on 35th Birthday

Oct 16, 2011

Thirty-five years ago this week, Rupp Arena opened with its first concert. Since then, the arena named for the legendary Kentucky basketball coach has hosted countless concerts, basketball games, circuses, ice shows and monster-truck rallies. It has undergone two extensive renovations and has been an economic bedrock for downtown Lexington. On the 35th anniversary of its opening concert, Rupp sits at a crossroads as community leaders again debate its future. The question: Can the iconic arena continue to evolve for another 35 years? Or has it become outdated, a relic that needs to be torn down and replaced by a modern complex packed with luxury amenities and electronic gadgetry?