C-Center feasibility report details plans for new arena

Courtesy of Press Enterprise

On Sept. 25, a feasibility report was released and determined that the estimated costs of the C-Center fall between $70 and $90 million.The site’s feasibility plan outlined three different ways the C-Center could be built based on how much the university is able to raise. Overall financial support will not come from student or state funding, but rather private sources and cooperative scholarships. UCR athletic director Brian Wickstrom said that the naming rights for the UCR C-Center will be based on the biggest contribution.

The C-Center was thusly named for its many potential uses and representations: commencement, concerts, convocations, court sports, conferences, civic engagement and as well as for the “C” on Box Springs Mountains.

In order for the C-Center to make financial sense, it must have multi-functional purposes for hosting different events. According to Wickstrom, seasonal games, such as volleyball and basketball games, leave the center empty for most of the year.

“The student rec center is more set up for classes than it is for concerts. Hopefully the C-Center becomes a place that attracts top concerts for the students,” said Wickstrom. “I talked to Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG), one of the top concert promoters in Southern California and the nation. They said that if we build the C-Center they would love to bring their shows here.”

As a venue meant for large crowds, the C-Center would have the high chance of attracting popular artists who needed the space to perform concerts. Possible touring days can be scheduled between other stadiums and these ventures will likely draw more businesses towards the Inland Empire. With an expected class of 3,500 undergraduates in the UCR residence halls and vibrant Riverside community, the C-Center still has the opportunity to make revenue during non-sporting periods, according to Wickstrom.

Potentially, the arena could seat 5,000 to 6.500 people. It would be a four level structure with street-level retail and offices as well as onsite parking with up to 400 spaces. The Arena General Parking would be four levels, with a capacity of about 1,100 vehicles, including street-level retail and possible offices. The location of the C-Center would replace Bannockburn Village and the large parking structure would replace Lot 24.

According to the report summary, “It is too early in the planning process for determination of the mix or nature of the retail offerings. There will be an opportunity for a variety vendors to occupy the street-level retail spaces provided,” in accordance with university standards and procedures. The site feasibility still has to work out the possible future traffic issues with the city of Riverside and other parties, in terms of scheduling.

Bannockburn Village was built over 40 years ago and has been part of the university’s long-term renovation plans. The current 400 student beds of the complex have slowly been replaced and maximized to accompany UCR’s growing rate of enrollment.

Facebook Comments