ROSE BOWL STADIUM RENOVATION
The final phase of the Rose Bowl’s $182.7 million Renovation Project is now well underway. The project was approved and funded by the RBOC and City Council in 2010 in an effort to keep the stadium relevant with five primary objectives.
Improve Public Safety - Early stages of the project widened a total of 8 stadium tunnels and added intermediate aisles and handrails in both end zone seating sections allowing for much more efficient and safe ingress and egress in and out the stadium. The time it takes to exit the stadium has been decreased by approximately 50%. The field level has been returned, as much as possible, to its Myron Hunt’s “elliptical” shape by removing seats on both side lines and adding concrete walking paths to major field tunnels. The new paths allowed for added egress/ ingress routes to the stadium seats, enhancing fan experience and improving public safety.
Enhance Fan Experience - Installed state of the art new energy efficient LED video board and a new LED scoreboard on the East rim. In addition, the south scoreboard was reconstructed to recall the 1940’s vintage housing and scoreboard. The concourse has been widened where possible along with the reconstruction of the eight entry gate structures in an effort to provide more permanent and prominent site identification. Exterior directional signage has been added and improved for better guest navigation along with the reconstruction of four restrooms on the West side.
Unquestionably, the most visible and highest cost element of the renovation was that of the new Terry Donahue Pavilion on the west side of the stadium. In compliance with the EIR, while the building maintained its overall height it did grow in length and width. Along with providing new multiple levels of true premium seating with air conditioning the new facility provides a commercial kitchen, a state of the art emergency command center and AV control room, along with covered and secured storage space.
Improve Facility Operations - A new more efficient electrical service was brought to the stadium and over the course of the phased construction the old obsolete service loads has been transferred and decommissioned. Reconfiguration of the stadium’s service and storage areas on the North end have improved the appearance from the golf course along with providing more usable and organized space for operational needs. The reestablished field level hedges and concrete walking paths on both the East and West sidelines have not only provided an enhanced aesthetic, but a very functional means to service stadium while maintaining premium field conditions. The grassy median on Arroyo Blvd also underwent some improvements. A vegetated bio-swale was added within the median in both a beautiful and environmentally friendly upgrade. Installing bio-swales instead of impermeable storm systems helps filter pollutants from water runoff, while recharging the groundwater with clean water.
Develop the opportunities for Long Term Revenue Streams - Six new LED Boards were installed to give a new home for sponsorship and advertising, cleaning up the entire rim from the years of mismatched sponsorship and advertising.
Maintain stadium as a National Historic Landmark - All the improvements completed were planned in an effort and sensitivity to the stadium historic status. The reconstruction of the South scoreboard (1940’s vintage), field level shape, reestablished field hedges and use of real board formed concrete walls at the pavilion and tunnel walls.
Construction began in January 2011 immediately following the Rose Bowl Game and continued until September and the start of the UCLA season. Each subsequent phase of work has continued with the same timeline, working around the major football tenants as well as the monthly Flea Markets and various other scheduled events. The Renovation Project is scheduled to be substantially complete prior to the Rose Bowl Game 2017.
The stadium continues to see and hear overwhelmingly positive fan responses after each phase and project elements that have been completed. While the project may be coming to an end, the needs to maintain a nearly 100 year old treasure continue. Some of the future improvements that are currently unfunded that will need to be addressed are new stadium seating, new more energy efficient field lighting, improved sound system, new concession stands, etc.