SAN ANTONIO – Members of the media were given a behind-the-scenes look at the ongoing renovations at the AT&T Center Thursday.
The $100 million project includes new seating for the entire arena, a major expansion of the Plaza Level concourse on the arena's south side, a bigger fan shop, a new scoreboard and lighting improvements. The HEB Fan Zone level will include two new bar areas, along with a new east porch that will provide a street-festival like atmosphere.
Spurs Sports & Entertainment officials said the changes are meant to keep fans coming to the games, at a time when the home-watching experience has improved dramatically.
"We're creating some new experiences for the balcony-level fans. We're creating some new experiences for plaza-level fans and for charter-level fans," said Bobby Perez. "Everyone is going to have a different, new, experience in this building."
More than 300 construction workers have been working inside the arena since the Spurs' season ended. Officials said the project was on, if not ahead, of schedule.
"They are each assigned specific areas," said Sid Perkins, with Hunt Construction. "It's just like a sports team -- they take care of their area and you count on your teammates to take care of the other areas."
If an event were held at the arena today, it would be standing room only.
"Eighteen thousand-plus seats have been removed from the stadium," Perkins said.
Bexar County Commissioner Tommy Calvert said the stadium-style seats will be recycled, but after a public outcry more than 1,000 folding chairs removed from the AT&T Center could potentially wind up in the living rooms of Spurs fans.
"The chairs will be either be put into a county facility, or they will go to an auction of some sort," said Calvert.
Barring any major delay, a majority of the renovations will be complete by late October.