Erie Insurance Arena
|Former names||Erie Civic Center
Louis J. Tullio Arena (1983–2012)
|Location||809 French Street
Erie, Pennsylvania 16501
|Owner||Erie County Convention Center Authority|
|Operator||Erie County Convention Center Authority|
6,562 (Indoor football)
|Broke ground||September 1981|
|Opened||June 7, 1983|
|Renovated||Dec 2011 - Sept 2013|
|Construction cost||$9.3 million|
|Architect||Heidt, Evans & Salata (original)
Sink Combs Dethlefs (renovation)
|Erie Panthers (ECHL) (1988–1996)
Erie Wave (WBL) (1990-1992
Erie Otters (OHL) (1996–present)
Erie Freeze (AIFA) (2005–2007)
Erie Explosion (PIFL) (2008–present)
Erie BayHawks (D-League) (2008–present)
Erie Insurance Arena (originally called Erie Civic Center and then Louis J. Tullio Arena) is a multi-purpose indoor arena in the downtown area of Erie, Pennsylvania. It is home to the Erie Otters of the Ontario Hockey League, the Erie BayHawks of the NBA Development League, and the Erie Explosion of the Continental Indoor Football League. It was built in 1983 as part of the Louis J. Tullio Plaza, which also includes the Warner Theatre and Jerry Uht Park - all of which are administered by the Erie County Convention Center Authority. The arena is named for the Erie Insurance Group, which purchased the naming rights in May 2012.
Erie Insurance Arena, formerly called Erie Civic Center and subsequently Louis J. Tullio Arena, was built for $9.3 million in 1983. It opened in June 1983 with a Beach Boys concert. Since then, it has hosted the likes of Elton John, Rod Stewart, Cher, KISS, Barry Manilow, Alan Jackson & The Legendary Alice Cooper. Erie Insurance Arena has also featured Disney on Ice, World Wrestling Entertainment, Impact Wrestling, the Harlem Globetrotters, and Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.
In May 2012, the Erie County Convention Center Authority and the Erie Insurance Group announced a 10-year, $3 million naming agreement that will rename the former Louis J. Tullio Arena, "Erie Insurance Arena." This renaming coincides with the completion of the current $42-million dollar renovation project that is currently underway and was completed in September 2013. The renovation, designed by Friday/Sink Combs Dethlefs Joint Venture Architects, modernized Erie Insurance Arena and added some new sections and a landscaped park entrance. Construction on the project was carried by the Pittsburgh-based Turner Construction Company. Improvements to Erie Insurance Arena included additional seating and concourses. To accommodate these new additions, its footprint expanded from the original 152,000-square-foot (14,100 m2) to 218,000-square-foot (20,300 m2). This increased the venue's capacity to 6,833 for hockey, 6,754 for basketball and about 9,000 for concerts. After the renovations had completed in September 2013, Erie Insurance Arena now has enlarged lobbies and more box office windows, luxury suites, administrative offices, mechanical rooms, training areas, new locker rooms, and a club level sponsored by GoErie.com.Funding for Erie Insurance Arena's renovations derived from $32 million pledged by former Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell combined with $10 million paid by Erie County.
In September 2014, the Erie County Convention Center Authority completed a $1.4 million upgrade to the arena that was dropped from the previous renovation due to a tightened budget. This new upgrade included a new closed-circuit video system, new high-definition video panels on the East and West end of the arena, and a new high-definition "center ice" video scoreboard. The new scoreboard replaced the scoreboard added in 2006. The new East and West end video boards replace scoreboards from the original construction of the arena in 1983. The new scoreboard and video boards were manufactured by Daktronics.
2011 NCAA Women's Frozen Four
Louis J. Tullio Arena, in conjunction with Mercyhurst College, hosted the 2011 NCAA National Collegiate Women's Ice Hockey Tournament, in which the Wisconsin Badgers defeated the Boston University Terriers by a score of 4-1.
2014 NCAA Women's Division II National Elite Eight
Erie Insurance Arena offers conventional food and beverage offerings such as pizza and corn dogs, as well as some more unique items to include Greek hot dogs, Greek nachos, and pepperoni balls. The venue offers a separate menu for the floor seats, which includes shrimp cocktails, spinach artichoke dips, steak burgers on a pretzel bun, chicken bacon sandwich, Philadelphia cheesesteak, and a cheese and veggie platter. It also features wine, beer, and mixed cocktail drinks.
- Flowers, Kevin (June 15, 2008). "Millions Have Flocked to Major Downtown Venue Since June 1983". Erie Times-News. Retrieved June 15, 2008.
- "Louis J. Tullion Arena to Undergo $42 Million Renovation & Expansion". Erie County Convention Center Authority. October 16, 2012. Retrieved October 16, 2012.
- Flowers, Kevin (May 10, 2012). "Tullio Arena to Become Erie Insurance Arena". Erie Times-News. Retrieved May 14, 2012.
- Flowers, Kevin (May 15, 2014). "Erie Insurance Arena to Get New, High-Definition, Video Scoreboard". Erie Times-News. Retrieved January 24, 2015.
- Guiher, Joshua (2012). "Tullio Arena Reviews, Erie BayHawks". Stadium Journey. Retrieved September 7, 2012.