The Crisler plan is poorly conceived. Here’s why.
Arena design has failed to “mature” the way baseball park design has trended. Baseball park designers realized over the last 30 years that the gold standard to be applied in design is: how is the fan experienced maximized? — rather than worrying excessively about how plush or snazzy the park might be. So baseball has, for example, harkened back to Fenway and others to generate Camden Yards. Basketball arena designers need to similarly mimic Cameron Indoor Stadium, Indiana’s Assembly Hall, and others — arenas which tuck the fans in tight, in an intimate and compelling format. (A salutary collateral benefit, which is not insignificant, is that these arenas provide a maximized home-court advantage.) Crisler, with it’s laid-back, low-slope aisles, will never be an arena which can maximize fan acess, intimacy and home-court advantage. The building isbadly flawed, and I tend to think we need to just start over. (Either that or move back to Yost Field House (Ice Arena), which was ten times the basketball venue Crisler ever can be.)