Patriot Center Gets Facelift

Posted: February 21, 2008 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Dave Andrews

Change is under way at the Patriot Center, Mason’s 10,000-seat arena for Mason basketball games, Commencement and a wide variety of performances and special events.

In the past, some Patriot Center patrons were confused with multiple ticket booth locations. But the new construction taking place at the Patriot Center’s west entrance (nearest Lot L) will consolidate all ticket sales operations into one prominent location convenient to incoming traffic.

The additions will also make room for new restroom locations as well as additional concession stands. Concession menus will be expanded, and grills will have improved ventilation. The additional points of sale will mean upwards of 15 new concession employees during events.

Barry Geisler at the Patriot Center
Barry Geisler, general manager of the Patriot Center, near the west entrance where a new box office is being constructed.
Photo by Nicolas Tan

“When completed, the renovations will provide a much improved guest experience for people attending events here,” says Barry Geisler, general manager of the Patriot Center. “More concession stands and additional restrooms mean spectators will spend more time enjoying the games and events, instead of waiting in line.”

Construction of the consolidated box office began in mid-October of last year and is projected for completion by mid-May. But that is just phase one of the $10.5 million construction project.

Three more phases will follow, as each of the entrances will see similar improvements, one by one. Once complete, four additional restroom locations, as well as four new concession stands will be in place.

Charles Fanshaw, director of facilities planning at Mason, says that though phase one is taking longer than expected, each of the following phases will take less time. The entire project will be completed by spring 2009.

The project also includes sprucing up the concourse with new ceiling tile, paint and floor covering. Wall graphics will be added, though the final design and color schemes are still undecided.

“You can’t go wrong adding more restrooms and concessions at a venue like the Patriot Center. Reducing lines in either of those two areas is always a good thing,” Geisler says. “The Patriot Center hasn’t had any kind of renewal since it was built more than 20 years ago, so I think this is a very wise investment.”

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