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College Park Center cited as “greenest” U.S. college basketball arena

The University of Texas at Arlington’s College Park Center, the 7,000-seat arena that anchors the 20-acre, mixed-use College Park District, has been cited as the “greenest” college basketball arena in America by an online lawn care booking service.

College Park Center at The University of Texas at Arlington

Homecoming 2015 at UTA's College Park Center

College Park Center topped Lawnstarter’s list of 11 U.S. arenas, including Towson University’s SECU Arena in Maryland; Matthew Knight Arena at the University of Oregon; and the University of Michigan’s Crisler Center in Ann Arbor.

The Center opened in February 2012 and was designed by renowned global architecture firm HKS Inc., whose former chairman, Ralph Hawkins, is a UTA Distinguished Alumnus. The U.S. Green Building Council rated College Park Center a LEED Gold structure for the way the venue incorporates recycled construction materials, natural light and many energy-saving features.

"As a UTA alumnus, I remain proud of the remarkable achievements in sustainability that HKS incorporated into the College Park Center design,” Hawkins said. “The special events venue has been nationally recognized for the way the building interacts with its environment, and it should be on the top of everyone’s list of arenas to visit.”

In addition, the adjacent Green at College Park was one of the nation’s first three green spaces to be certified through Green Business Certification Inc.’s Sustainable SITES Initiative when it was recognized by the organization in 2012. The program offers a comprehensive rating system designed to distinguish sustainable landscapes, measure their performance and elevate their value.

Over the past four years, College Park Center has become a hub of campus and community activity. It is home to UTA men’s and women’s basketball and women’s volleyball; Maverick Speakers Series events; professional sporting and entertainment events; University commencement exercises and a host of high school graduations, among many other engagements.

New this spring, College Park Center becomes the home court for the WNBA Dallas Wings women’s professional basketball team – adding a third professional sports franchise to the city of Arlington in addition to the Dallas Cowboys and the Texas Rangers Baseball Club.

In fall 2016, College Park Center will be host to the Sun Belt Conference Volleyball Championship, bringing in the top eight finishers in the conference's regular season.

Hawkins, who earned his Bachelor of Science in Architecture in 1973, often has noted the impact that his UTA education has had on his celebrated career. He recently was honored with the prestigious American College of Healthcare Architects Lifetime Achievement Award, the highest honor that the American College of Healthcare Architects can bestow on an architect.

Hawkins and his wife, Susan, committed $1.5 million the to University in 2012 in support of the former School of Architecture, funds used in part to develop a strategic vision for the School’s future. He currently serves as chairman of the UTA President’s Advisory Council.

Last fall, Hawkins helped celebrate the new UTA College of Architecture, Planning and Public Affairs, the result of an integration of the former schools of Architecture and of Urban and Public Affairs. He noted that the unified CAPPA fosters synergies possible across design, planning, and public affairs disciplines.

“It’s tremendously satisfying to see CAPPA and my alma mater, UTA, on such a positive trajectory and the transformation that is taking place under the University’s Strategic Plan 2020, especially in the areas of sustainable urban communities and health and the human condition,” Hawkins said. “I’m glad to play a role in supporting UTA and shaping the University’s vision for years to come.”

About The University of Texas at Arlington

The University of Texas at Arlington is a comprehensive research institution of more than 51,000 students in campus-based and online degree programs and is the second-largest institution in The University of Texas System. The Chronicle of Higher Education ranked UTA as one of the 20 fastest-growing public research universities in the nation in 2014. U.S. News & World Report ranks UTA fifth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. The University is a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is ranked as the top four-year college in Texas for veterans on Military Times’ 2016 Best for Vets list. Visit www.uta.edu to learn more, and find UTA rankings and recognition at http://www.uta.edu/uta/about/rankings.php.

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The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.