ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - More than $2 million in renovations have been planned for the Sullivan Arena.
Alaskans can expect to see an indoor turf, a 5,000 square foot storage building and 1,000 new chairs, at the arena within the next year, according to staff with the Anchorage Parks and Recreation Department.
Director John Rodda said some of the improvements are to replace original items that have been in the arena since it opened in 1983.
"You can't keep using the same equipment over and over," Rodda said. "It has to be replaced. It's life cycle is gone. To use it properly, plus add in the new turf, the staging, the acoustics - those are all key to making this facility upgraded."
City officials said other items are to help generate money for the arena, which took at least one financial hit with the loss of the Aces this year.
Rodda says the money for this work comes from a state grant given in 2012 for a series of projects, which would have covered parking lot upgrades, lighting on pathways and even relocated part of Mulcahy stadium.
However, the department ended up needing even more money to complete those.
"Those additional funds we would need are not available," he said. "And in this economic climate, we're not going to see those. So in turn, we refocused, and now we're going to take care of some of the other things in the building."
Rodda said the goal is to have many of the improvements in place by October of this year.
The grant money is set to expire in June of 2018, meaning if the department did not use the funds, the money would be lost.