SBD/Issue 52/Facilities & Venues

NBA Facility Notes

Trail Blazers Owner Paul Allen said, “For any NBA team in a small- or medium-sized market, you have to have three things — an advantageous arena deal, a strong fan base and a modest payroll — to be a financial success. Right now, we don’t have those things.” When asked if he would ever try to buy back the Rose Garden, Allen said, “It’s worth talking about. Whether that will happen, I can’t say. It would have to be a much more favorable deal (with the city) than we were operating under” (PORTLAND TRIBUNE, 11/22).

JAZZ: SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL’s Don Muret reports the Jazz are accommodating corporate clients with premium seats by “creating a business-to-business premium club, an area that could generate twice the revenue for the team compared with selling the space as individual suites.” The team spent $150,000-200,000 to “consolidate four skyboxes on the arena’s fourth level” and build the Executives Club. The 23 memberships sell for $26,000 per season in three-year commitments, and the Jazz would collect about $1.8M from selling out the 92-seat space. Utah-based FFKR Architects designed the club (SBJ, 11/21 issue).

NETS: In N.Y., Paul Colford reports that among considerations for Brooklyn’s Atlantic Yards project, the future home of the new Nets arena, are a “wildflower meadow and boardwalk on the roof” and an entryway with “stoop-like seating and a new marsh to handle storm water runoff.” The Frank Gehry-designed, 18,000-seat arena is “now a kind of bowtie-shaped space.” During a presentation Tuesday at the Center for Architecture, Gehry “showed how giant images might be projected” on the floor and ceiling, as well as how the streets outside the arena “might be striped with the Nets’ team colors” (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 11/23).

BOBCATS: In Charlotte, Erik Spanberg reports the Bobcats are “adjusting the franchise’s pitch for arena naming rights and other sponsorships, hoping to take advantage” of the scoreboard in their new arena and other high-tech equipment “to close more deals.” Sources estimated the cost of naming rights at the arena at $2-3.5M annually. WMG Marketing President Jeff Knapple said, “There is a scale of diminishing return once a building opens, but I don’t think (the Bobcats) will feel that in the first year. I think they have some attractive assets: It’s a new building with a new team in an area that’s passionate about basketball” (CHARLOTTE BUSINESS JOURNAL, 11/21 issue).

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