Missouri State University announced Thursday (May 30) its plans to begin the removal of exterior signage at JQH Arena, beginning next week.
The removal of all exterior “JQH Arena” signage will begin on Monday, June 3 and is expected to be completed within seven days. The process will kick off the first phase of renaming the university’s 11,000-seat athletics and entertainment venue.
“We are preparing for a new name and a new era for the arena,” said Missouri State President Clif Smart. “We have had interest in the naming rights, and we want that blank slate to be visible as a good-faith effort on our part entering this process.”
Although the exterior signage is being removed, branded signs inside the facility will remain in place until a new naming rights agreement has been reached. According to Smart, the university hopes to have the naming process finalized within the next 12 months.
The university previously received a total of $24.4 million in payments from the Revocable Trust of John Q. Hammons in exchange for the arena’s original naming rights. The balance of the Trust’s payment obligation to the university transferred to JD Holdings in May of 2018, as a result of a bankruptcy settlement reached between the Trust and JD Holdings.
Naming rights were returned to the university under the terms of a Sept. 28, 2018 settlement between Missouri State and JD Holdings. Additionally, JD Holdings is obligated to pay the university a total of $10.2 million. JD Holdings has already paid the university $3.6 million, and is set to pay an additional $6.6 million in three annual installments, with the final payment due in 2022.
Construction of the facility was announced on Feb. 10, 2006 with a formal groundbreaking ceremony on Dec. 21 that same year. With a final construction budget of $67 million, JQH Arena officially opened its doors on Nov. 13, 2008 with a sellout concert by the Eagles. The first game in the arena took place on Nov. 22, 2008 with Missouri State’s 62-57 men’s basketball victory over Arkansas.
As part of the exterior signage removal project, estimated at a total cost of $20,750 to the Missouri State University Foundation, the basketball complex lettering above the south entrance to the facility will also be removed.