Leading-Edge Covelli Center Opens at The Ohio State University
What some are calling the best midsize, multisport arena in the country opened recently on The Ohio State University campus in Columbus, providing the university’s varsity volleyball, gymnastics, fencing and wrestling programs with a state-of-the-art venue for the first time.
The $50 million Covelli Center – designed by Moody Nolan and Populous, of Kansas City, MO – opened in May after four years of planning and construction. The arena reflects a national trend toward multiuse sports facilities serving smaller fan bases, and is the latest OSU sports or recreation facility in which Moody Nolan has played a major role. Others include the Jerome Schottenstein Center, Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, The Recreation and Physical Activities Center and the new Ty Tucker Tennis Center, which is scheduled to open in late 2020.
The 100,000-plus-square-foot facility borders Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium on Ohio State’s west side. The arena provides seating for about 3,700 and also includes concessions, locker rooms, restrooms and other spectator amenities. The Covelli Center also houses the Jennings Family Practice Facility, home of the men’s wrestling team.
In addition to regular use by seven varsity teams, the Covelli Center is expected to host local tournaments, camps and occasional women’s basketball games.
Ohio State made several coaches available to media on June 3 as it showed off the new facility for the first time.
“When you walk into a place like Covelli, it’s really easy – almost impossible not to be – grateful,” women’s volleyball coach Geoff Carlston told the Columbus Dispatch.
Men’s volleyball coach Kevin Burch said that “to go from good facilities . . . to the best in the country is a pretty exciting feeling for these guys.”