A few months of hard work and $125 million later, the new and improved Vivint Smart Home Arena is here! An open house was held from 10-1:30 today, allowing anyone with time and the desire to check out the renovations.
Lucky for me I did have time, and the desire is never in question. So I headed on over and watched the proceedings. Speeches were given by the president of the arena, the president of Okland construction, Mark Miller, Gail Miller, and Steve Starks. Every time I hear Gail speak I am reminded how fortunate we are to have her passion and vision behind the Utah Jazz.
Fighting through tears she thanked Utahns for their continued love and support, and expressed her excitement yet nervousness about the event. My favorite line she said was this: The Jazz and this building cannot be separated. They are here to stay. Mark had a great line as well, expressing their commitment to accomplishing what they couldn’t during his dad’s lifetime: bring a championship to Utah.
After everyone got their say, they revealed the new J-Note statue.
There it is. The best logo in the NBA in all its glory. It actually is pretty cool and will make for a great picture spot. I went ahead and toured the rest of the renovations for a few minutes. I’ll upload the pictures, but here were my thoughts while walking through:
- Free guest Wifi. FINALLY. I really hope it functions well because I think this can add to an already good atmosphere. They mentioned an app that will be great for fans during the game. I don’t know the details, but I’m interested to see how that turns out.
- The seats weren’t as padded as I was expecting, and that’s a good thing. I’ve been to San Antonio and those were very squishy seats. The navy gives a very professional look and the added comfort is great.
- The lights made a bigger difference than I would have guessed. The court really stands out and looks amazing.
- I love the more open layout on each floor, but especially up top. It allows for a more casual feel and includes everyone in the stadium.
Overall the changes weren’t dramatic, but they were effective. I’m grateful for the commitment of the Millers and for giving us updated state-of-the-art facilities. I hope our support and home court advantage will more than match the efforts that have been put in over the last several months.
Now let’s get this season started!