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UT Dallas Plans $13 Million Esports Center

The center is expected to be completed in late 2025

The University of Texas at Dallas plans to convert a portion of the current student union into an esports hub through a $13 million renovation project.

According to a document filed with the state (via Dallas Business Journal), the building will span 17,384 square feet across two stories. The revamped space will include the expansive gaming lounge, a versatile gaming zone, facilities for broadcasting and production and a fresh dining option.

“With the growth we have experienced at UT Dallas over the last several years, these key projects will provide much needed additional space and opportunities for our students,” said Dr. Calvin Jamison, vice president for facilities and economic development.

The university's former Pub at UTD dining area will be the site of the renovation. Demolition of specific sections was slated to commence in January or early February, according to the school's website.

UT Dallas boasts varsity esports teams specializing in Rocket League, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Overwatch and League of Legends. All varsity players hold the status of student-athletes and enjoy athletic perks from the institution, such as scholarships, uniforms and priority class registration.

Despite being a relatively new entrant, the university is swiftly emerging as a formidable force in collegiate esports. According to the Dallas Business Journal, in 2021, its Super Smash Bros. Ultimate squad clinched its second national championship, while by the close of the 2020-21 academic year, the UTD Overwatch team had soared to rank among the nation's top eight esports teams.

But this isn’t the only major project planned for UT Dallas. The first building of the Edith and Peter O’Donnell Jr. Athenaeum, which will be the second home for the Crow Museum of Asian Art, is also on track to open later this year. 

The document states that construction on the esports center is anticipated to conclude by December. While an exact opening date wasn't revealed, the plan is to open sometime in early 2025.

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