The $25 million demolition on landmark University of Texas events venue the Frank Erwin Center and adjacent Cooley Pavilion kicked off Tuesday morning. The 46-year-old complex will be cleared for expansion of the university's Dell Medical School and a new oncology care hospital staffed by Houston's MD Anderson Cancer Center, the Austin American-Statesman reported.
Construction of the two hospitals, which UT announced in August, will cost an estimated $2.5 billion. Groundbreaking expected to begin in 2026. They are set to open by 2029 or 2030.
Named (somewhat controversially) for the chairman of the UT Systems board of regents shortly after his death, the drum-shaped building stood for almost half a century, serving as home for he UT Austin men's and women's basketball teams and as a venue for concerts and special events and had a 16,540-person peak capacity.