LEXINGTON, Ky (5/24/2013)—The Lexington Center Corporation (LLC), owner of the Lexington Center, which includes Rupp Arena and the convention center, has big plans for the future of the building. Renovations and upgrades to the arena will develop on the work done by the Arena, Arts, and Entertainment District Task Force appointed by Mayor Jim Gray.
“A presumption of modifying the upper arena is first on the list,” said Frank Butler, project manager for Rupp Arena Arts and Entertainment District. “Chairs will be replacing the benches, like those in the lower arena, suites will be located on the concourse level like they are in most modernized arenas, and the exterior of Rupp Arena will change.”
The downtown area is the heart of most communities, and Rupp Arena and the Lexington Convention Center is one of the most widely recognized entertainment venues.
“Within the last year we have been communicating with consultants and are just a month away from getting final results,” Butler said. “A strategic financial plan, feasibility on the relocation of the convention center, and meetings with PC sports program manager have provided us help with the new center.”
Butler said that multiple firms will be interviewed in mid-June and decisions will be made by the end of June on which firms will be helping in the renovations.
“We requested proposals from architects for designs, risk services and other firms for their ideas on the construction that will be taken place, and received responses from a number of those firms,” Butler said.
Butler said that the final cost of renovations it is still up in the air.
“The projected amount on the task force report was $110 million,” Butler said. “However, our budget for Rupp Arena’s renovations is $140 million.”
Since the planning for a newly renovated Rupp Arena began last year, Butler says that they have come along way.
“For right now that’s where we are, which is a significant increase than before,” Butler said.
LLC is working with the center’s tenants and a sports and entertainment marketing group as they consider adding premium seating options and other amenities.
Anticipation strikes the company and community alike as they wait for the final blue print and firms to be chosen. Once that is decided the renovations on Rupp Arena will begin.
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