By MIRIAM FINDER ANNENBERG
Journal & Topics Reporter
Rosemont Village Board members recently approved a construction manager contract with D-R Rosemont for work on renovations to Allstate Arena’s concourse bathrooms, vestibules and two performer lounges totalling no more than $1.275 million.
Patrick Nagle, executive director of Allstate Arena, said the bathrooms used by visitors to the space haven’t been updated since 2000.
“We’re putting a million and a half people through [each year],” he said. “Through the past 18 years, they’ve seen their use.”
The bathrooms will be completely gutted and new sinks, stalls, and tiles will be installed. Nagle said the outcome will be updated, clean, and modernized bathrooms, including automated sinks.
As for the vestibules that those entering and leaving the arena walk through each day, the mats laid down to collect water and dirt simply lose their effectiveness and wear out over time, Nagle said. In their place, workers will lay new, more durable carpet in the vestibule areas.
“It will take the abuse a little better,” Nagle said.
Work on the two lounges will update spaces used by performers as dressing rooms during concerts and athletes’ families and press during sporting events.
“We’re taking those two rooms and completely gutting them,” Nagle said. “They each have bathrooms and showers in them -- there will be brand new bathrooms and showers, new flooring, and wall tiling.”
He said these rooms haven’t been updated in about eight years, although they take their fair share of abuse during the course of the year, especially as Allstate Arena can host up to 150 events annually. This year has seen performers such as Demi Lovato, Lorde and other entertainment events like Disney on Ice.
Given the number of events taking place at the arena, officials are working to schedule renovations without too much disruption to shows. Nagle said if a show isn’t scheduled until a Friday or Saturday in a given week, renovations could begin on a Monday with the bathroom basically done in time for the weekend show. The one-dozen bathrooms will be renovated one at a time, so in the instance that a bathroom is still closed during a show, plenty of other bathrooms will be available.
Nagle estimated work will get underway on the bathrooms near the end of May.
Officials also expect the new carpet for the vestibules to be delivered in about two weeks.
The work should be done by Sept. 1, according to Nagle.
“It’s like washing the car, and if you’ve got a 1980 car and you wash it and wax it, after awhile it just loses its luster until you get a new paint job,” Nagle said. “The building is in spectacular shape for a building that was built in 1980, and you just have to look at where the most abuse is.”
According to Anticipated 2018 Revenues, Allstate Arena will bring in more than $20.7 million to Rosemont in 2018.