The face of the Bicentennial Center has looked pretty much the same for the past 30 years, but on Monday, the city commission approved an $8.6 million bond that will bring changes throughout the center.
"It's in it thirty-third year of operation, it's really not gone through any major renovations since it opened,"general manager, Chris Bird said. "It will be good for the building. I think it will help everybody who walks through the door have a much more fun time."
Changes include more restrooms, upgrading the concession stand and remodeling the concourse.
The new management team also plans to reinforce the rigging, which will allow for bigger acts.
"Larger family shows that just weigh more than what we are able to rig right now," Bird said. "Shows are getting heavier now, they're not getting lighter, so we are at a limited capacity right now."
Two of the five commissioners voted against the plan. Barb Shirley said some of her concerns include possible state budget cuts and that there wasn't enough time to go through all of the information. She also that they should wait until the new management company, Global Spectrum, had been at the arena for more time.
Supporters say that in the ten months the company had been there, they have saved more than $200,000.
"We definitely are happy to project that there's not going to be any additional taxes on the tax payer," Bird said. "Our savings from how it was run to how it will be run and how we are going to move forward, it's basically going to pay for itself in the savings."
The Bicentennial Center should have its new face by 2015.