Bad Bunny concert highlights need for XL Center improvements: ‘Logistically, it was difficult’

Reggaeton star Bad Bunny not only brought 14,000 fans and a financial windfall to Hartford’s XL Center early this month — he also brought 33 trucks of gear. Those trucks had to navigate Asylum Street and the XL Center’s out-of-date loading docks, highlighting the need for a $100-million-plus upgrade of the arena’s infrastructure so it can keep drawing top shows, the facility’s manager said on Thursday. An XL upgrade is especially urgent as UConn seeks state funding for a planned $100 million renovation of Gampel Pavilion on its Storrs campus that could divert games from Hartford. State officials are also working to expand the funding for a comprehensive revamp of the XL Center after the first round of bids for the project came in far above the initial $100 million budget. The current funding allocated for the project can’t accommodate some of the needed improvements, Freimuth said. The new plan for the XL renovations is scheduled to go out for bid on May 1, with bids coming in by the end of June.

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