U.S. Cellular Center renovation marches forward

Exterior of the U.S. Cellular Center entrance


Recent improvements to Asheville’s largest convention and entertainment venue, the U.S. Cellular Center, have included addition of flexible theater seating in the arena, a new sound and lighting setup and conversion of a storage room into a press / meeting room. Now the facility’s aging HVAC system will come into the modern age.


It was last upgraded in the 1970s.


During their April 9 meeting, Asheville City Council adopted a budget amendment for $1.2 million for this improvement, to come from the USCC’s fund balance.


The USCC renovation began with the City’s 2016-2017 Capital Improvement Budget for the amount of $3.3 million, partially funded by a $1.5 million grant from the Buncombe County Tourism Product Development Fund.


The earlier phases of the project were completed in November 2018. Now it’s time for the heating and air conditioning system installation. The improvement will reduce energy consumption with the addition of smart controls into the new HVAC system.


The City is using a “Construction Manager at Risk” (CMAR) method for contracting this project. By doing so, the City was able to incorporate minority business participation in the contract to exceed $396,250, which comes out to 10 percent of the project.


For more information, including the staff report by Capital Projects Director Jade Dundas and the Council resolution, visit this link.