The Baltimore-based Cordish Companies and Comcast Spectacor today announced plans for a $50 million esports and entertainment venue at the Philadelphia Sports Complex.
What the companies called a first-of-its-kind venue will seat up to 3,500 guests and stand as the largest new-construction, purpose-built esports arena in the Western Hemisphere. Its primary tenant, the Philadelphia Fusion esports franchise, is one of 20 international teams competing in the Overwatch League.
The Fusion Arena also will host a variety of live entertainment programming and experiences, the companies said in a news release.
“It is a tremendous honor for The Cordish Companies to grow its partnership with Comcast Spectacor and bring a state-of-the-art, world-class esports and entertainment venue to the heart of the Philadelphia Sports Complex,” said Blake Cordish, principal of The Cordish Companies. “Fusion Arena will set the gold standard for competitive gaming and debut on one of the country’s most exciting platforms of sports and entertainment amid Philadelphia’s professional sports teams.”
The project is testament to the booming popularity of esports, which now commonly sell out arenas as fans watch and root for their favorite players competing in a variety of games. Universities are offering courses in game design and fielding student esports teams.
Designed by Populous, an architecture firm with experience in the fast-growing esports space, Fusion Arena will boast 60,000 square feet of new construction, which is set to begin this summer.
Fusion Arena is the second of several announcements surrounding Comcast Spectacor and The Cordish Companies’ real estate development within the Philadelphia Sports Complex, adjacent to Xfinity Live! In February, the partnership announced plans for Pattison Place, an $80 million, new construction Class A office tower.