Campus Says It Hopes to Accelerate Stadium Retrofit

Related Articles »

  • Printer Friendly Printer Friendly
  • Comments Comments (0)

Campus officials said this morning that they hope to begin the seismic retrofitting of UC Berkeley's Memorial Stadium sooner than they originally anticipated, possibly setting off another legal battle over development at the site.

The campus hopes to begin construction on the stadium-which straddles the Hayward Fault-before a controversial athletic center is finished in 2011, said Bob Milano, Jr., the campus's assistant athletic director.

Under the original plan, the campus would have waited until the center was complete before it would begin updating the stadium.

Milano said the campus considered accelerating the timeline because a court delayed the construction of the center for more than 20 months. Even under the new plan, Milano estimated the retrofit could not begin for 18 months.

In December 2006, three groups-the city of Berkeley, the California Oak Foundation and the Panoramic Hill Association-sued the university to prevent construction of the center.

They presented a variety of concerns including seismic and safety issues.

In July 2008, however, Alameda County Superior Court Judge Barbara Miller ruled in the campus's favor.

But Mike Kelly, president of the association, said his organization may be forced to sue the university again if they accelerate the remodeling plan without properly considering the consequences.

"They are putting us in a position where they are going to force us to sue them again," he said.

Before the retrofit can begin, the campus will have to decide on the value of Memorial Stadium, something that was controversial during the trial in Miller's court.

If the campus determines the cost of the retrofit will be more than half of the stadium's value, the campus may be prevented from proceeding with the plan due to a 1972 earthquake zoning law.

Before the retrofit could proceed, the campus will have to present a plan to the UC Board of Regents for their approval and funding. Milano said he knew of no plans to present anything to the regents at their meeting at UC Irvine next week.

The next board meeting will be in November.

Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates said he was excited that the campus had agreed to accelerate the retrofit, something he had been requesting since the project was first presented to the public in Fall 2006.

"We're happy," he said. "This is one of our major concerns."

But Bates said he could not yet say if he totally approved of the plan.

"The devil is in the details," he said. "We'll have to see what they present."


Will Kane is the city news editor. Contact him at [email protected]

Comments (0) »

Comment Policy
The Daily Cal encourages readers to voice their opinions respectfully in regards to both the readers and writers of The Daily Californian. Comments are not pre-moderated, but may be removed if deemed to be in violation of this policy. Comments should remain on topic, concerning the article or blog post to which they are connected. Brevity is encouraged. Posting under a pseudonym is discouraged, but permitted. Click here to read the full comment policy.
White space
Left Arrow
Image Student regent resigns after sex crime allegations
Jesse Cheng officially announced his resignation from his positio...Read More»
Image Campus graduate takes new first steps
UC Berkeley's graduation day this year was symbolic for graduate Austin Whi...Read More»
Image Regents rescind part of approval
The ongoing legal battle surrounding revisions to the building plans for th...Read More»
Image UC spared additional cuts in budget revision
While the University of California escaped further funding reductions M...Read More»
Image UC Board of Regents wary of unreliable state funds
SAN FRANCISCO - Following the release of Gov. Jerry Brown's revis...Read More»
Image Faculty members eligible for new Back-Up Care prog...
UC Berkeley officials announced Wednesday...Read More»
Right Arrow

Job Postings

White Space