MSG At Halfway Point Of First Phase Of Renovation Project
Construction crews are at the halfway point with the first phase of MSG’s renovation, and the arena is on schedule to be ready for the NHL Rangers’ season opener on Oct. 27. MSG President & CEO Hank Ratner led journalists on a tour of the arena Thursday to show the progress. “On the construction side and the commercial side, the transformation is on schedule,” Ratner said. Crews have installed new seats in the lower bowl, framed out the expanded locker rooms and the new Delta Sky Club hospitality suite, and have expanded mid- and lower-level concourses. Ratner said 19 of the 20 event-level suites, valued at $1M per year, have been contracted, and that 75% of the 58 Madison-level suites have also been sold. Crews must finish construction on the concourses and lower suites, as well as the Delta Club, which will provide views of players entering and exiting the locker rooms. Ratner said the arena will not have to cancel any of its fall events due to construction. The construction is being done over three summers, and will finish in the fall of '13 (Fred Dreier, SportsBusiness Journal). In N.Y., Jeremy Olshan notes new “dark, almost Yankees-blue seats have been installed throughout the lower bowl, and over the next two years will be added throughout the arena.” But Ratner said that the seating “won’t be entirely monochrome.” Roughly 1,000 lighter blue seats “will be installed in the upper bowl to pay homage to the ones way up in the rafters which were once the MSG equivalent of the Yankee Stadium bleachers” (N.Y. POST, 7/29). On Long Island, Arthur Staple notes the “final touches -- a completely renovated Seventh Avenue lobby, a new fan deck on the 10th floor and a state-of-the-art GardenVision scoreboard -- will be the last summer’s work.” Ratner: “We’re right where we hoped to be. The scope of the work is moving along nicely” (NEWSDAY, 7/29).