New MSG to have spectator bridges

Updated: November 26, 2010, 11:24 AM ET
ESPNNewYork.com

Fans at the new Madison Square Garden will be on top of the action ... literally.

When the renovation of the 42-year-old facility is completed, spectator bridges will hang from the ceiling, allowing a bird's-eye view of the playing surface. Portions of the MSG project will be finished over a period from 2011-13. The bridges are supposed to be functional in October 2013.

"They'll be like no other seat in professional sports or entertainment," MSG President Hank Ratner said, according to USA Today. "I think probably the Green Monster [at the Boston Red Sox's Fenway Park] is the only thing you could come to making the comparison. But these are going to take it up a notch -- because you're on bridges."

The Garden renovation is expected to cost $775 million to $850 million and will change the entrance, seating, concourses and displays of the arena. The bridges are likely the most unique feature of the plan.

However, concerns were recently raised about the height of fan seating in arenas when a 2-year-old boy fell to his death from a luxury suite at the Staples Center after a Lakers game.

Ratner would not specifically address the death of the child but said that safety is always a concern at MSG.

"This product shouldn't really be different from that," he said. "Safety is of paramount and utmost concern in everything we do here."

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