Friday, February 16, 2007

Pepsi Center to get $15 million makeover

WE'VE MOVED! Democratic Convention Watch is now at

As with any convention hall, Denver's Pepsi Center will undergo some major construction to get it ready to host the 2008 Democratic Convention:

In preparation for the Democratic National Convention, they'll likely yank out lower-level seats, knock down luxury suite walls, haul in massive amounts of steel to reinforce the ceiling, erect a huge building in a parking lot to accommodate the media, and bring in new technology and miles of wire and cable.

Then, once the spectacle is over, the presidential hopeful has left the building and Denver's time in the international spotlight is up, they'll swiftly restore the home of the Denver Nuggets and the Colorado Avalanche to the way it was before. All in 10 weeks. The estimated cost: at least $15 million.
The time-consuming process is already in motion, however, and the Pepsi Center can expect to make many changes that the Boston site underwent in 2004. "The NBA All-Star Game probably was the largest thing we've had, from space to logistics to all the moving parts, and this is 10 times that," [Pepsi Center vice president and general manager of arena operations Dave] Jolette said.

The work will begin in early July 2008 and will finish in mid-September. The convention is set for Aug. 25 to Aug. 28 and could draw 35,000 guests to the region. The timing is good. Kroenke's Nuggets and Avalanche, as well as his Colorado Mammoth lacrosse club, will have finished their seasons by then.

The construction still will have a disruptive effect. The Pepsi Center will not be able to host any other events, like concerts or religious gatherings, over that span. But Kroenke Sports Enterprises will be able to maintain its offices for hundreds of employees, and its billionaire owner will not have to worry about drilling or dust in his penthouse atop the arena.
Workers also will have to alter the arena to provide at least 50 production and staff offices, 20,000 square feet for candidate offices, 5,000 square feet for space used by police, Secret Service and other security, "holding rooms," and makeup and dressing rooms, among other areas, according to a document outlining the Democrats' convention expectations.

A 220,000-square-foot edifice, with everything from air conditioning to carpets, will be set up beside the Pepsi Center to handle the 15,000 media members expected to arrive en masse.

If Mr. Jolette thinks the convention is only 10 times the work of hosting an NBA All-Star game, then he doesn't know his job very well. He has some time to learn, but he better get going.


denverdan said...

they should just set up the parking garage across auraria parkway next to the tivoli as the media center. plenty of space there. add some carpet and close it off for the a/c. save some money