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UCLA's Pauley Pavilion to get makeover

May 11, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
University of California Los Angeles's Pauley Pavilion is showing its age. Now the home of the Bruins will get a big makeover.When it opened back in 1965, at a cost of just over $5 million, Pauley Pavilion was a state-of-the-art facility. Teams here have won 47 national college championships. The Olympics were held there. Monday though, it's in need of a state-of-the-art facelift.

"It's embarrassing to go into our locker rooms," said Mike Warren, Campaign of Champions. "If I were recruiting for the school now I wouldn't want to take a recruit into those dressing rooms. It's awful. So now's the time and we're going to do it."

Former basketball star Mike Warren is part of UCLA's Campaign of Champions, a $100 million fundraising effort to pay for the arena's renovation.

"No matter which entrance you use, once inside the venue you will be immediately mesmerized by the magnificent, larger-than-life graphics, chronicling the rich, championship tradition of UCLA athletics," said UCLA Athletic Director Dan Guerrero.

Seating capacity will increase from 12,800 to 14,000, with fans closer to the action. The university has already raised $52.5 million to pay for the renovation. Campus support and private donations will pay for the rest. Work is scheduled to begin next February.

"I think it's great," said Bruins fan Ralph McCoy. "I think it's long overdue. I'm happy to see them move the seats closer to the end lines. And I can't wait to see it when it's all done."

"It's amazing," said Bruins fan Bryan Trock. "I've been coming to Pauley Pavilion since I was 2 years old. My dad's an alumni and my brother just got in about a month and a half ago. And he's excited and I've been sending him text messages about how amazing it's going to look, and he is just beyond himself. He's excited."

The price tag for everything is $185 million. The renovation is expected to be complete in time for the 2012 basketball season.

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