Koch Arena’s new lights put bright focus on the court

New lights in Koch Arena will change the look of the stands and court.
New lights in Koch Arena will change the look of the stands and court. The Wichita Eagle

The new lights in Koch Arena are largely installed and ready.

I walked in Monday afternoon and noticed a significant difference in how the court is lit. The picture may fall short of portraying that new look. I think your first visit will leave an impression.

The lighting, as described in April when Wichita State announced the project, gives the court a stage feeling. The seats are more in the dark. The light is bright and focused on the court, similar to Kansas State’s Bramlage Coliseum and New York’s Madison Square Garden.

The change to LED lamps means the Koch Arena lights can go down for player introductions, or other uses, and come back on quickly for sports and other events.

“With LED lights, it’s instantaneous on and off, so if you want to go dark, you can do that and not have to worry about shuttering your lights,” associate athletic director Brad Pittman said in April. “They also have the ability to do some flickering, some strobing, and you can create scenes where there’s flashing.”

New banners are also planned.

I would expect real estate in the rafters now occupied by Missouri Valley Conference championship and NIT banners to diminish. Wichita State needs to consolidate its banners, because of success in basketball and volleyball over the past 15 years, and moving to the American Athletic Conference provides a good opportunity to change the look.

Paul Suellentrop: 316-269-6760, @paulsuellentrop