UO on Mac Court: 'We can't really keep a building just for their own sake'

UO on Mac Court: 'We can't really keep a building just for their own sake'

EUGENE, Ore. - Mac Court has been a symbol of University of Oregon athletics for the past 84 years.

Now as the basketball and volleyball teams move on to their new home, the university is left to decide what's next for McArthur Court.

"We're trying to find a really exciting, innovative way to reuse the building if we can," said UO Architect Chris Ramey.

While many people are looking back on the history of Mac Court as it prepares to host it's last Ducks basketball game on New Year's Day, the university is looking toward the building's future.

Visual essay: The History of Mac Court | Photo Gallery | Share Your Photos

"We can't really keep a building just for their own sake," said Ramey, "they have to be able to help us advance the mission of the university."

Last spring, the university completed a study, exploring different uses for the building. Now the School of Architecture and Allied Arts may move in.

"They're not sure exactly where they want to be on campus," Ramey said. "They want to be in a new building, might be here, might be somewhere else."

If they decide to move in, the outside of the building will remain virtually unchanged - but the inside will be completely different.

According to Ramey, the inside of the building would be completely gutted to make way for classrooms, studio spaces and offices.

"It would be this building plus at least another building, maybe two more buildings to really contain all of what they want to have here," he said.
    
But a decision on that isn't expected until sometime early in the winter term.

If the AAA program does decide to move, Ramey said the next step will be securing funding to convert the building into classrooms.
    
He said if that happens, the project could take up to five years.
    
For now, Mac Court will still be a hub for athletics.

"They're going to use it for volleyball, one of the club sports is going to use it," Ramey said. "The crew team is going to use the corridors."