Working on the premise that the Rose Bowl is an aging beauty that needs cosmetic work, Pasadena city officials are considering more than $11 million in improvements for the 66-year-old stadium, including a new electronic scoreboard and luxury sky boxes.
“If we want to see the stadium continue on the path of being a classical yet serviceable modern facility to attract quality events, we think we’re going to have to spend some money on it,” said Deputy City Manager Ed Aghayan.
Among the proposals suggested by city staff are a $1 million parking lot resurfacing job, a $350,000 press box elevator, $2 million in seismic improvements to the Rose Bowl’s north end, a $1-million matrix scoreboard and more than $5 million in luxury suites. Private funding would be expected to pay for some of the improvements, the officials said.
There was some opposition to the plan by Bowl Director Rick Cole, who said he feared that continued city capital outlays could increase pressure for more commercial uses of the Rose Bowl, because profits have been so small.