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Tudor Fieldhouse sees changes

Photo by Marcel Merwin | The Rice Thresher

Tudor Fieldhouse received a $17,000 redesign over the summer, including a new court surface.

By Julie Doer     8/29/14 3:53pm

This summer, Autry Court in Tudor Fieldhouse received a $17,000 makeover. The court received a special redesign that was created with a stain, which lasts longer than the original paint.

Director of Facilities and Events at Rice Ryan Bucher and his colleague, Andrew Ryerson, spearheaded this project. Bucher explained the redesign was motivated by flaws in the original paint job.

“We were having some issues with the paint that led underneath the resurfacing or the finish fixture,” Bucher said. “We wanted to get it redone so that aesthetically it looked a little bit better.”

Autry Court is used for basketball games, volleyball games and other various events. Bucher claimed the stain will hold up well under stress.

“Due to the amount of use that Autry Court gets for basketball, volleyball and events like O-Week, the skinny wood panes would crack the paint eventually,” Bucher said. “We’re hoping for some maintenance advantages by going to a stained wood instead of a painted wood.”

Ryerson described the small changes in design that were made.

“We went with a heavy navy paint and navy border,” Ryerson said. “With the design you see now, we have shrunken the ‘R’ a little bit more than what it used to be.”

Bucher said he and Ryerson consulted several coaches and administrators during the decision making process. Their goal was to give the gym a polished look.

“We tried to pick something that aesthetically was a little bit different, a little bit flashier,” Bucher said. “We got some input from our coaches, basketball coaches, from administrators of what they’d like us to do. We took that into account, but ultimately, it was a maintenance decision as well. Hopefully, it creates some newness and excitement along with our new men’s basketball coach.”

Quality Hardwood Floors, Inc., a San Marcos-based company, stained the floor. Ryerson commended the companies work.

“[Quality Hardwood Floors] has done a lot of work for NBA teams, for other universities and for high schools,” Ryerson said. “They did an incredible job, and we hope to do more with them in the future.”

Bucher said, ultimately, he would like this new design to remain pristine for several years.

“Ideally, you only paint or resurface every five to seven years,” Bucher said. “We’ve had to do it a couple of times in the five years or six years that it’s been down just because of some different issues. We’re hoping that this design lasts a while, and we can just resurface every year.”

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