SBJ/December 1 - 7, 2003/Facilities

Jacksonville hockey team gets a record-setting new home

The $130 million arena, shown as builders were finishing up, opened late last month.
The city of Jacksonville last month opened the biggest, most expensive U.S. arena that's ever been built with a minor league hockey team as its primary tenant.

Duval County voters in September 2000 approved the Better Jacksonville Plan, a massive urban-renewal plan that called for a 30-year, half-cent sales tax increase to raise $2.2 billion for several citywide projects, including an arena and a minor league ballpark. That ballpark, the $34 million Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville, opened in April directly across the street from the new $130 million Jacksonville Arena.

The arena's only tenant, the Jacksonville Barracudas, is one of four teams in the first-year WHA2 minor hockey league. The team has signed a one-year lease, with options for two one-year extensions. The team has sold out its inventory of 62 dasherboard and nine on-ice logos and also receives a share of parking and concessions revenue. Arena operator SMG is marketing the arena sponsorships and advertising beyond the team's inventory, including naming rights to the facility. Those revenue streams go to the city.

The new facility replaces 41-year-old, 8,000-seat Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Coliseum, which was demolished on the same site in the spring after seeing a string of tenants depart in recent years. The University of Jacksonville men's basketball team, the facility's anchor tenant for nearly four decades, left following the 1998-99 season for a renovated, on-campus gym. The ECHL Lizard Kings folded after the 1999-2000 season following five seasons of poor attendance, and the Arena Football 2 Tomcats, after seeing attendance decline from their inaugural 2000 season, folded after the 2002 campaign.

Jacksonville Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver has the territorial rights to an arena football team locally, but the earliest a team could return to the city would be 2005.

Every club seat and all but three suites in the new arena have been leased. Companies that have signed on as major corporate partners are Coca-Cola, Winn-Dixie, Hardee's, Shell/First Coast Energy, Tru Green ChemLawn and Budweiser.

The arena has been selected to host the 2004 WHA2 All-Star Game. It also will host the first and second rounds of the NCAA men's basketball tournament in 2006.

Jacksonville Arena

City: Jacksonville

Tenant: WHA2 Jacksonville Barracudas

Owner/operator: City of Jacksonville/SMG

Architects: HOK; Bessent, Hammack & Ruckman

General contractor; construction manager: Gilbane/Scheer/Renaissance Group; Turner/Perry-McCall/Northside Partnership

No. of seats: 14,000 (hockey and football); 15,000 (basketball)

No. of suites (price per year): 28 ($50,000-$55,000)

No. of club seats (price per year): 1,100 ($300)

Projected cost: $130 million

Funding: 100 percent public; part of Better Jacksonville Plan urban renewal effort

Concessionaire: Levy Restaurants

Pouring rights: Coca-Cola

Scoreboard provider: Barco Media (contract value: $1.3 million*)

Floor/ice provider: Horner Flooring Co. ($84,680)/Ice Builders Inc. (contract value: $1.2 million)   

Seat provider: Irwin Seating Co. (contract value: $2.9 million)

First game: Nov. 28 vs. Miami Manatees

Jacksonville Arena Subcontractors
Company Work performed Contract value
Acousti Inc. Acoustical ceilings and call panels $436,808
Allen Spear Construction Exterior masonry $4,094,309
Athletic & Performance Rigging Co. Curtains at concourse $126,021
Avalotis Painting, multicolored interior coatings, wallcoverings, floor sealer, special coatings $1,200,000
Baron Manufacturing Millwork and finish carpentry $984,705
Berkel & Co. Deep foundations/augercast piling $662,508
Coreslab Structures Inc. Structural precast concrete $2,572,977
Dixie Group Resilient tile flooring, carpet, rubber flooring, access flooring $836,911
Dixie Metal Products Miscellaneous metals $728,718
Encompass Electric Co. Electrical $7,980,750
Evcon Services Spray-on fireproofing $242,992
Glass America Aluminum entrances, storefronts, windows and curtainwalls, security windows $1,993,098
Harper Mechanical Corp. HVAC and plumbing, trash chute $11,270,235
Hernandez Enterprises Interior and exterior metal studs, sheathing, insulation, drywall $3,372,895
Hirschfeld Steel Structural steel roof framing, steel joist, metal deck, metal pan stairs, miscellaneous metals $6,092,003
J.B. Coxwell Construction Street realignment $772,118
J.B. Coxwell Construction Demolition, site clearing and grading $620,795
J.B. Coxwell/NP Construction Co. (joint venture) New trolley lot construction $2,570,979
J.B. Mathews Co. Loading dock equipment, foot grills $37,192
Jacksonville Sound Sound system, distributed TV system, broadcast media system $679,288
Johnson-Lancaster & Associates Food service equipment $1,411,316
Kone Inc. Electric traction and hydraulic elevators, escalators, wheelchair lifts $1,982,985
Moyer Marble & Tile Ceramic and quarry tile $800,150
Onas Corp. Trolley lot demolition $334,950
Pat Ionadi Corp. Concrete formwork, cast-in-place concrete, reinforcing steel $7,992,738
R&B Fabcon Cast-in-place steps $251,092
R.B. Gay Toilet and bath accessories $288,670
R.D. Masonry Interior masonry $1,448,534
Realco Demolition Coliseum and ballpark demolition and clearing** $168,249
Register Contracting Co. Exterior metal wall panels $1,067,122
RL Campbell Roofing Co. Single-ply membrane roofing; sheet metal flashing and trim; roof accessories $1,288,944
SimplexGrinnell Fire protection $726,470
Smith Fence Co. Site improvements $900,000
Taylor Cotton & Ridley Hollow metal and wood doors and frames; finish hardware $531,624
United Forming Inc. Foundation concrete, below grade waterproofing, structural excavation, concrete formwork, reinforcing steel, cast-in-place concrete $1,277,098
VallyCrest Landscaping Landscape and irrigation $400,000
VallyCrest Landscaping Paving and hardscape $700,000
Vignauex Doors Overhead coiling doors and shutters $366,146
Waterproofing Specialists Waterproofing $69,096
Wink Davis Equipment Co. Commercial washer and dryer $11,510
* Package includes center-hung scoreboard and four video panels, video cameras, fascia boards, auxiliary scoreboards and timing systems
** Wolfson Park, a city-owned minor league baseball stadium, was demolished last fall for the new Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville, which opened in April and sits across the street from the new arena.
Sources: Street & Smith’s SportsBusiness Journal research, city of Jacksonville, SMG
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Related Topics:

Baseball, Hockey, Levy Restaurants, SMG

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