CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - The second phase of renovations is complete at the Show Me Center in Cape Girardeau, Missouri.
The renovations bring the facility to contemporary arena standards in time for the 2016-17 events at Southeast Missouri State University.
"These upgrades have provided a modern venue designed to attract and bring new performances to the delight of our patrons," said Ben Eller, facilities management project manager.
The summer 2016 renovations included reinforcement of existing and adding steel beams, a new catwalk and updates to the north parking lot. The upgrades began in May and are now complete.
Eller said 80 existing steel beams were strengthened to accommodate 5,000 pounds of rigging load each; 20 additional steel beams have been added to the west stage end of the arena ceiling, and a new catwalk was added leading to exhaust fans for maintenance purposes.
Abbie Vander Bol, marketing director of the Show Me Center, said reinforcement of existing beams and the addition of new beams allows the whole ceiling structure to support more weight and rigging brought by visiting shows and artists.
Work was also done to refurbish the north parking lot.
Vander Bol said Redhawks fans will have a safer parking experience, and vendors will have easier access to the north entrance and loading dock.
Structural steel upgrades over the summer totaled $815,715 and parking lot improvements were $903,794. The costs were financed with one-time funds with an internal loan from the university's fund balance, previously approved by the Board of Regents.
The first phase of work was finished in summer 2015 and included improvements to the facility's telescopic seating, installation of new seats to increase the facility's seating capacity, a new video scoreboard system, sound and lighting systems and a new roof.
The Board of Regents approved moving forward with the renovations in June 2014.