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$1.95M in stadium upgrades passed

The UK Athletic Association passed its operating budget for the 2011-12 fiscal year Thursday, which will include $1.95 million dollars in upgrades to Commonwealth Stadium.

The total operating budget passed was $83.6 million, which is around the middle of the pack among Southeastern Conference schools.

The Commonwealth Stadium upgrades, passed at Thursday’s UKAA board meeting, will include $1.65 million spent on new endzone scoreboards, $150,000 on “concrete/structural repair” and $150,000 on steel painting around the stadium.

The bid process for the scoreboards is ongoing but Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart said the process should be finalized and papers signed “today or tomorrow.” Because the bid process is not yet finished, it was unclear whether the scoreboard project would include ribbon boards around the upper-deck facade.

“A lot of it depends on the numbers we get back,” Barnhart said. “We’ve got some preliminary numbers and we should have those today or tomorrow and then we’ll be able to make some directions on what direction we go. But the ribbon boards are something I would like to have. What that means to the Hall of Fame ring (around the upper deck), we’ll figure that out. We’ll make sure we honor that the right way if we move those. But I want to make sure we have the opportunity to use those ribbon boards if we can. Those are great fan amenities.”

The UK Board of Trustees approved spending of $6.25 million on new Commonwealth Stadium scoreboards earlier this month. Barnhart said Thursday that the project has not been scaled back, despite the new figure at $1.65 million.

“The unique thing about the system in this state is you have to ask for spending ahead of time. So everybody knows what the number is,” Barnhart said. “So you show me a bid process, if you know what the number is, it’s going to bring you a bid less than that. It’s not overly intelligent in terms of our ability to get the best price. So we’ve got to be able to manage that in the proper fashion but the project itself is right on line with where we thought it would be.”

If all goes as planned, the old end zone scoreboards would be ripped down sometime in mid- to late June and the new scoreboards would be installed immediately. “If there’s something coming down, something better be coming up,” Barnhart said.

Other facility upgrades passed Thursday include:

-$300,000: Video board at UK Softball Complex
-$950,000: Renovations at Shively Sports Center, where most UK olympic sports train
-$100,000: Cosmetic upgrades to CATS Center, the athletic department’s tutoring center
-$1.1 million: Overhaul of track and field center, which has already begun

Barnhart also said a feasibility study exploring the idea of new stadia for football, baseball and softball should reach Barnhart’s desk within the next “25 or 30 days.”

  • That sounds great. I'm glad things are progressing.

    James, do you think there's a chance we only do one of the scoreboards in order to have the funds to be able to do the ribbon boards?

  • James, can you please tell me what Barnhart is trying to convey here:

    The UK Board of Trustees approved spending of $6.25 million on new Commonwealth Stadium scoreboards earlier this month. Barnhart said Thursday that the project has not been scaled back, despite the new figure at $1.65 million.

    “The unique thing about the system in this state is you have to ask for spending ahead of time. So everybody knows what the number is,” Barnhart said. “So you show me a bid process, if you know what the number is, it’s going to bring you a bid less than that. It’s not overly intelligent in terms of our ability to get the best price. So we’ve got to be able to manage that in the proper fashion but the project itself is right on line with where we thought it would be.”

  • blue mold said... (original post)

    That sounds great. I'm glad things are progressing.

    James, do you think there's a chance we only do one of the scoreboards in order to have the funds to be able to do the ribbon boards?

    No. Both end zones going up at the same time, and both going up in time for the upcoming season. I'd say by this time next week, UK would know about the ribbon boards for the upcoming season. Mitch wants them very badly, that much is clear. Question is if the bid is right for them to get them in for this season or not.

    http://www.twitter.com/pennington_jl pennington.jl@gmail.com

  • DACats86 said... (original post)

    James, can you please tell me what Barnhart is trying to convey here:

    The UK Board of Trustees approved spending of $6.25 million on new Commonwealth Stadium scoreboards earlier this month. Barnhart said Thursday that the project has not been scaled back, despite the new figure at $1.65 million.

    “The unique thing about the system in this state is you have to ask for spending ahead of time. So everybody knows what the number is,” Barnhart said. “So you show me a bid process, if you know what the number is, it’s going to bring you a bid less than that. It’s not overly intelligent in terms of our ability to get the best price. So we’ve got to be able to manage that in the proper fashion but the project itself is right on line with where we thought it would be.”

    What I'm about to type is under the presumption that I understand it all correctly. I'm fairly confident I do.

    When you get pre-approved for a loan to buy a car, you go to the bank and ask for a loan. At that point, you probably don't know exactly how much you're spending, so you give the bank an estimate and secure that much. Once you actually figure out what car you're buying, then you spend what you need to and you already have enough money secured, and you just spend that much. You don't have to spend up to the exact dollar of how much you asked for.

    I think that's kind of the case in this situation. They couldn't ask for a specific amount because they didn't have a bid secured. And they couldn't secure a bid because they didn't know how much would be budgeted.

    Clear as mud? Me too. That's as well as I can answer that.

    http://www.twitter.com/pennington_jl pennington.jl@gmail.com

  • JamesPennington said... (original post)

    No. Both end zones going up at the same time, and both going up in time for the upcoming season. I'd say by this time next week, UK would know about the ribbon boards for the upcoming season. Mitch wants them very badly, that much is clear. Question is if the bid is right for them to get them in for this season or not.

    Ribbon boards have to help add ad revenue.
    I'm hoping our football program can get better industry sponsorships as the stadium improves.

  • http://www.kentucky.com/2011/04/29/1723012/uk-scoreboards-will-be-paid-for.html

    Still $6 million boards. This article explains the $1.65 million figure.

  • JamesPennington said... (original post)

    What I'm about to type is under the presumption that I understand it all correctly. I'm fairly confident I do.

    When you get pre-approved for a loan to buy a car, you go to the bank and ask for a loan. At that point, you probably don't know exactly how much you're spending, so you give the bank an estimate and secure that much. Once you actually figure out what car you're buying, then you spend what you need to and you already have enough money secured, and you just spend that much. You don't have to spend up to the exact dollar of how much you asked for.

    I think that's kind of the case in this situation. They couldn't ask for a specific amount because they didn't have a bid secured. And they couldn't secure a bid because they didn't know how much would be budgeted.

    Clear as mud? Me too. That's as well as I can answer that.

    I think he is also saying that the companies completing an RFP (request for proposal) would up their prices based on the amount approved. It is still a competitive process, but the company that wins the bid can inflate their numbers a bit in their 'proposal' based on knowing the ceiling that the BOT sets before creating their proposal.

    Two roads diverged in a wood, and I, I took the one less traveled by, and it has made all the difference (Frost).

  • The only thing I'm finding troubling is the statement about the Ring of Honor and just figuring it out as they go. Which goes back to my request of seeing an overall plan for what they are thinking about doing. You waste a lot of money figuring things out as you go in my experiences. He's doing what needs to be done though. Glad Todd leaving lit a fire somewhere.

  • DACats86 said... (original post)

    James, can you please tell me what Barnhart is trying to convey here:

    The UK Board of Trustees approved spending of $6.25 million on new Commonwealth Stadium scoreboards earlier this month. Barnhart said Thursday that the project has not been scaled back, despite the new figure at $1.65 million.

    “The unique thing about the system in this state is you have to ask for spending ahead of time. So everybody knows what the number is,” Barnhart said. “So you show me a bid process, if you know what the number is, it’s going to bring you a bid less than that. It’s not overly intelligent in terms of our ability to get the best price. So we’ve got to be able to manage that in the proper fashion but the project itself is right on line with where we thought it would be.”

    I guess private donations aren't included in the UKAA's budget.

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