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Raleigh's PNC Arena getting makeover

Raleigh's PNC Arena is undergoing a facelift, according to officials who say it's time for the facility to grow.

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Raleigh's PNC Arena is undergoing a facelift, according to officials who say it’s time for the facility to grow.

The arena, which turns 15 this year, brings in more than a million guests a year for hockey, basketball, concerts and other shows.

“When the building gets to this point, you have to make a decision on the future of the building,” General Manager Dave Olsen said.

Though some projects have been planned to be completed in the years ahead, parts of the arena are changing in time for the start of the hockey season.

Those visiting the arena this fall might notice it’s a little brighter. More than 200 LED fixtures now illuminate the floor at the arena.

Olsen said the Carolina Hurricanes will be the first U.S. NHL team to make the switch to energy-efficient LED lights. He said the arena spends about $1.4 million on electricity each year.

“When you have utility bills the cost of ours, anything you can do to minimize that certainly helps,” Olsen said.

The LED refit cost $650,000.

Crews are also busy making other changes for fans.

New countertops and HD-TV monitors for the arena’s Ledge Lounge is a $120,000 project, converting two suites into a Loge Box is $100,000, and a new three-sided electric fireplace for the Champions Club will cost $30,000.

Designers are working on plans for a major expansion that would bring an open-air bar area and additional restaurant space.

Olsen said the arena needs to grow with the Triangle.

“The city and the county and the centennial authority see this as an investment they want to continue making better,” Olsen said.

The architect will present a design proposal to arena officials later this year. The expansion idea is in the early phases and no final decisions have been made



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