New Baltimore Arena to Have an Approximately 15,000-Person Capacity

| April 5, 2022 | 0 Comments

Oak View Group (OVG) is currently underway on its $150-plus million renovation of the Baltimore Arena which, when completed, will have a significantly higher capacity. The capacity will go from 12,289 for basketball games to approximately 15,000.

With the renovated arena and additional seating, OVG hopes to host sporting events such as UFC, tennis, boxing, NBA exhibition games, NCAA events, tournaments, and more.

At a 15,000-person capacity, Baltimore Arena would be equal to or greater than the capacity of several arenas used for the First Four and First and Second Rounds of the 2022 and 2023 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournaments. This includes UD Arena in Dayton (13,409), Dickies Arena in Fort Worth (13,550), Viejas Arena in San Diego (12,414), and Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville (15,000).

Arenas such as Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines (16,110) and MVP Arena in Albany (15,229), which are also featured in the first two rounds of the tournament, have a slightly larger capacity than the new Baltimore Arena. Some arenas used in the first two rounds have a capacity of up to 20,000.

Every arena used for the regional rounds and the Final Four are larger than the projected capacity of the new Baltimore Arena.

Baltimore Arena has not hosted the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament since 1995.

At 15,000, Baltimore Arena will be smaller than every home arena in the NBA and NHL.

Along with sporting events, Baltimore Arena will host concerts, family shows, and community, corporate, and private events.

Renovations to the arena include “adding seats and suites, refurbishing concourses, upgrading concessions areas, and changing the building’s appearance,” according to an OVG press release.

The release further states: “Additional upgrades to the facility will include focuses on sustainability such as using locally sourced materials, LED lighting, low flow and waterless fixtures, and more; world-class acoustics to amplify the audio experience; next-generation touchless and self-serve technologies for food & beverage and merchandise purchases to minimize transaction times; renovations to the venue’s back of house; structural, mechanical, electrical, lighting and fire protection upgrades; as well as construction encompassing, plumbing, electrical, fire protection, lighting; and updates to the Arena’s telecommunications infrastructure, wireless network, and video/network/security systems.”

Baltimore Arena has three sides of seating with two decks, and one side with a stage and wall. The stage is currently being demolished.

Regarding the stage demolition, OVG told SouthBMore.com the following in an email:

Current touring acts do not use the existing permanent stage in the Baltimore area. They locate the tour stage in front of the existing stage. This causes hundreds of obstructed view seats on the sides of the stage. The existing permanent stage is being demolished to allow concert stages to be located in that spot. This allows those obstructed side seats to become available again for tours. Demolishing the existing stage also allows the concert to load in from the backstage area and will greatly reduce the time it takes to set up and take down.

The Bethesda-based Clark Construction Group is the general contractor on the project. The company has a Baltimore office at Stadium Square in South Baltimore. Clark Construction has set up an OxBlue construction camera in the interior of the arena.

Brisbin Brook Beynon is the architect and Intreegue Design is the landscape architect for exterior spaces.

Thirty Five Ventures is an equity investor in the project. Thirty Five Ventures was founded by Brooklyn Nets player and Maryland native Kevin Durant as well as Rich Kleiman.

Arena construction started in March and will be completed for the CIAA Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournaments on February 20, 2023.

Screenshot from the OxBlue construction camera

Construction photos form March 14th

Exterior renderings presented at UDAAP from Brisbin Brook Beynon

Alternative design without sails 

Current pictures and interior renderings presented at UDAAP from Brisbin Brook Beynon

Plaza renderings presented at UDAAP  from Intreegue Design

About the Author:

Founder and Publisher of SouthBmore.com, longtime resident of South Baltimore, and a graduate of Towson University. Diehard Ravens and O's fan, father of three, amateur pizza chef, skateboarder, and "bar food" foodie. Email me at [email protected] and follow me on Twitter at @SoBoKevin.
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