Officially unveiled during a video presentation in front of hundreds of guests and media as well as eight Cavaliers players, hours before the team’s final home game of the 2018-19 season, Quicken Loans Arena will now be known as Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
“Since 1994, Cleveland has shared countless unforgettable moments at this arena," Cavaliers Chairman and Quicken Loans Founder and Chairman Dan Gilbert said. "From hosting world-class music acts to multiple NBA Finals games, the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse has been the epicenter of entertainment in Cleveland for decades. Today marks the beginning of the next chapter in the evolution of this incredible facility, as not just one of the world’s premier sports and entertainment venues, but a hub of technology that is leading the charge in innovation, efficiency and fan experience.”
The announcement was made Tuesday afternoon by Gilbert, Quicken Loans CEO Jay Farner, Cavaliers and Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse CEO Len Komoroski and Cavaliers General Manager Koby Altman. They were joined by Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson and Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish.
Rocket Mortgage is the first completely digital mortgage experience available to consumers. The company is the nation’s largest home mortgage lender and continues to operate a tech-driven office in the heart of downtown Cleveland.
The downtown arena, most recently known as “The Q,” was called Gund Arena for the first 11 years of its existence, named after former owner Gordon Gund. It was renamed Quicken Loans Arena when Gilbert bought the team for $375 million in 2005. The building, which seats about 19,000, has been undergoing a $185 million renovation over the past few months and is set to be completed this fall.
The renovation will increase the total square footage of the venue from 95,380 square feet to 152,970 square feet.
A new glass facade featuring 1,475 glass pieces and atrium will add 42,530 square feet of new public space to create a dramatic exterior presence that gives off a FieldHouse feel. The wall of glass, which is on the north side of the building to reflect the downtown Cleveland skyline, will have Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse signage.
Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse will also have eight new public destination hospitality spaces and feature the latest in cutting-edge technology that will redefine the fan experience. There will be 279 wireless access points, 62 reimagined suites, six new or reimagined membership spaces and more than 731 flat screen TVs.
“There are many synergies between the transformation of this beautiful venue and the nation’s largest residential home lender,” Farner said. “Cleveland has been a great home to us for many years, not only because of the arena naming, but also because our highly successful 600-team member downtown office. We are thrilled to see our Rocket Mortgage brand take center stage while we join the Cavaliers in this exciting new era of Cleveland sports and entertainment history.”
To celebrate Fan Appreciation Night in the season finale versus the Charlotte Hornets on Tuesday, fans will be treated to a special halftime concert by hip-hop star Flo Rida, who will perform several of his hits including “My House.”
“Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse will bring a new identity to a building that has been completely transformed and will remain Cleveland’s sports and entertainment epicenter for decades to come,” Komoroski said.
The 25-year-old publicly-owned facility is operated by the Cavaliers. The transformation project is a joint-venture between the City of Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, the Gateway Economic Development Corporation and the Cavaliers to modernize the venue and allow both the arena and community to compete for major, impactful national and international events. The Cavaliers are privately funding $115 million of the total $185 million transformation project, plus any cost overruns.
The $70 million capped, public portion of funding will be repaid almost entirely from direct, arena event-related, self-generated revenue sources and being used to complete the remaining portion of the public space redesign, as well the the square footage increase. The largest portion of revenue sources is the existing Admissions Tax on tickets sold for events at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
The arena will close in mid-May to complete the renovation in time for the grand opening on Sept. 30 with six-time Grammy Award winning and Ohio natives, the Black Keys, in concert.
That show will begin a full slate of sports and entertainment for 2019-20 that includes the celebration of the Cavaliers 50th season, along with top-notch entertainment acts Jurassic World Live (Oct. 3-6), Carrie Underwood (Oct. 16), Celine Dion (Oct. 18), Elton John (Nov. 11), and Luke Combs (Nov. 16), with more to be announced soon.
Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse will also be home to many other sporting events in the future, including the 2022 NBA All-Star Game and the Women’s Final Four in 2024.
The transformation will extend the Cavs lease for seven more years through 2034, committing to the arena for at least 40 years since the team’s original lease, which is among the longest facility tenures in pro sports.