Bradley Center

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Bradley Center
The B.C.
Bmo harris bradley center2.jpg
Bradley Center
Address 1001 North Fourth Street
Location Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Coordinates 43°2′37″N 87°55′1″W / 43.04361°N 87.91694°W / 43.04361; -87.91694Coordinates: 43°2′37″N 87°55′1″W / 43.04361°N 87.91694°W / 43.04361; -87.91694
Owner Bradley Center Sports and Entertainment Corporation
Capacity Wrestling: 18,800
Concerts: 20,000
College basketball: 18,850
Basketball:
18,633 (1988–1997)
18,717 (1997–present)
Ice hockey: 17,845
Indoor soccer: 17,800
Construction
Broke ground October 20, 1986
Opened October 1, 1988
Construction cost $91 million
($184 million in 2016 dollars[1])
Architect HOK Sport (now Populous)
Kahler Slater
Torphy Architects
Zimmerman Design Group[2]
Structural engineer Thornton Tomasetti[3]
Services engineer M-E Engineers, Inc.[4]
General contractor Huber, Hunt & Nichols[5]
Tenants
Milwaukee Bucks (NBA) (1988–2018)
Milwaukee Admirals (IHL/AHL) (1988–2016)
Marquette Golden Eagles (NCAA) (1988–present)
Milwaukee Wave (MISL) (1988–2003)
Milwaukee Mustangs (AFL) (1994–2001)
Milwaukee Mustangs (AFL) (2009–2012)

The Bradley Center (known as the BMO Harris Bradley Center under sponsorship agreements) is an indoor arena located on the northwest corner of North 4th and West State Streets in downtown Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States.

It is home to the Milwaukee Bucks of the NBA and the Marquette University men's basketball team. It is also the former home of the Milwaukee Wave of the MISL, from 1988 to 2003, the original Milwaukee Mustangs of the AFL from 1994 to 2001, along with the second incarnation of the team from 2009 to 2012, the Badger Hockey Showdown from 1989 to 2002, and the Milwaukee Admirals of the AHL (and formerly of the IHL) from 1988 to 2016.

The arena employs about 50 full-time employees, mostly tradespeople and about 700 part-time employees to help during events.[6]

After the new Wisconsin Entertainment and Sports Center opens in September 2018, the Bradley Center will be demolished to make way for future development.[6]

History[edit]

The arena opened on October 1, 1988, with an exhibition hockey game between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Edmonton Oilers. At $90 million, it was meant to be a modern replacement of its current cross-street neighbor, The MECCA (now the UW–Milwaukee Panther Arena), built in 1950. The arena was built as an attempt to attract an expansion franchise for the National Hockey League, though this never occurred, and the International Hockey League's Milwaukee Admirals (later moving to the American Hockey League) used the arena for the majority of its existence. The MECCA, during much of its time operating as an NBA facility, had the league's smallest seating capacity, holding just over 11,000 people. Funds to build the Center were donated as a gift to the State of Wisconsin by broadcaster/Admirals owner Lloyd Pettit and his wife, Jane Bradley Pettit, in memory of Jane's late father, Harry Lynde Bradley of the Allen-Bradley company.

Despite being one of the premier NBA facilities when completed in 1988, it is currently one of the oldest active NBA arenas, only behind Madison Square Garden in New York City, and Oracle Arena in Oakland, though both have been renovated and the latter is scheduled to be replaced by the Chase Center in 2019. The donation from the Pettits did not include provision for the building's long-term capital needs or annual operating expenses. While the facility is self-sufficient, in recent years its tenants have been at a disadvantage compared with other NBA teams due to the arrangement.[7]

For several years, former Bucks owner and former U.S. Senator Herb Kohl proposed constructing a new, state-of-the-art downtown arena, but the community reaction to the idea of a publicly funded arena was mostly negative. In 2009, Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle included a provision in the state's capital budget seeking $5 million in state bonding support to renovate the Bradley Center. The Bradley Center's board of directors told state officials that the building needs $23 million in renovations, so they reportedly agreed to raise the remaining $18 million on their own.[8]

During the summer of 2010 the arena's longtime Sony Jumbotron scoreboard was replaced with a new 3.5-million-pixel LED unit manufactured by TS Sports and Lighthouse Technologies, and was put into service in October 2010 at the start of the Admirals season. Unlike many other NBA and NHL scoreboards, the bottom panel also has an LED screen, allowing display of many images above the floor itself rather than a static image of a sponsor or team logo.[9]

On May 21, 2012, the Bucks' then-owner Herb Kohl and representatives from BMO Harris Bank announced that the bank had officially purchased the naming rights for the Bradley Center, and it would now be called the BMO Harris Bradley Center. The Milwaukee Bucks will play their final home game there on April 9, 2018 against the Orlando Magic.[10]

Replacement[edit]

On September 18, 2013, then-deputy NBA commissioner Adam Silver toured the arena and found it unbefitting of an NBA team. Silver said that the building was a few thousand square feet short of NBA standards, and also lacked numerous amenities.[11] The NBA issued a mandate requiring the Bucks to relocate, or be close to completion of a new facility by 2017.

On April 16, 2014, Bucks' owner Herb Kohl announced an agreement to sell the franchise to New York City hedge-fund investors Marc Lasry and Wesley Edens. The deal included provisions for $100 million each from Kohl and the new ownership group, for a total of $200 million, toward the construction of a new downtown arena.[12]

On July 15, 2015, the Wisconsin Senate approved funding for the new Wisconsin Entertainment and Sports Center by a 21-10 margin, and on July 28, 2015, the Wisconsin State Assembly approved funding by a 52-34 margin.[13] On August 12, 2015, Governor Walker signed the arena spending plan at Wisconsin State Fair Park in West Allis, Wisconsin.[14]

During summer of 2016 the Admirals moved to the Panther Arena and the Bradley Center was modified to allow normal operation for two-years while making space for the construction of the new arena to the north. The arena's icemaking plant and HVAC buildings were demolished and the arena's cooling facilities moved to a smaller facility away from the construction site. As the arena will no longer host regular hockey games, it will only need to create ice for Disney on Ice performances in 2017 and 2018 and can use portable icemaking equipment. Other modifications include a new loading dock and trash disposal facilities on the east side of the structure.[15]

Notable events[edit]

College sports[edit]

The arena hosted the NCAA Frozen Four finals in 1993, 1997 and 2006 and the Great Midwest Conference men's basketball tournament in 1995.

The Bradley Center was a host site for second and third-round games in the 2014 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament and in 2017, for the sixth time since 1992.

MMA & Professional wrestling[edit]

The Bradley Center has been a fixture for World Wrestling Entertainment since February 1989 (then WWF) when it hosted The Main Event II, where the Mega Powers of Macho Man Randy Savage and Hulk Hogan disbanded, setting up a match between the two stars at WrestleMania V. Shortly thereafter, WWE's ratings fell and they began using the smaller MECCA for shows.

In the early 2000s, WWE returned to the Bradley Center for pay-per-views No Way Out (2002), Taboo Tuesday (2004), Elimination Chamber (2012), and Fastlane (2017). The Bradley Center also regularly hosts episodes of Raw and SmackDown Live.

The BMO Harris Bradley Center also played host to the first UFC event in Wisconsin: UFC Live: Hardy vs. Lytle on August 14, 2011. UFC 164 was also held at the arena on August 31, 2013.

Concerts[edit]

Date Artist Opening act(s) Tour / Concert name Attendance Revenue Notes
October 18, 1988 Amy Grant 6,679 / 14,050 $106,093
October 28, 1988 Van Halen Private Life OU812 10,924 / 14,050 $198,550
December 18, 1988 Luther Vandross Anita Baker 12,300 / 18,000 $287,875
April 1, 1989 Bon Jovi Skid Row New Jersey Syndicate 17,994 / 17,994 $334,685
November 29, 1989 Mötley Crüe Warrant Dr. Feelgood
January 10, 1990 New Kids on the Block Cover Girls Hangin' Tough 18,735 / 18,735 $346,807
July 27, 1990 Janet Jackson Rhythm Nation 15,491 / 15,884 $298,860
September 4, 1990 Kenny Rogers Dolly Parton
October 28, 1990 MC Hammer
October 31, 1990 ZZ Top Colin James Recycler 12,140 / 12,140 $226,420
November 11, 1990 New Kids on the Block Perfect Gentlemen The Magic Summer 17,900 / 17,900 $437,850
December 3, 1990 Heart Cheap Trick Brigade
January 24, 1991 Neil Young Sonic Youth Smell The Horse
February 18, 1991 Paul Simon Born at the Right Time 10,445 / 12,771 $247,225
February 28, 1991 Bell Biv DeVoe Johnny Gill 12,696 / 13,000 $273,450
August 16, 1991 Gloria Estefan Into The Light
November 5, 1991 Metallica Wherever We May Roam
November 10, 1991 Rush Eric Johnson Roll the Bones
November 23, 1991 Jerry Garcia Band
November 29, 1991 Paula Abdul Under My Spell
December 31, 1991 Luther Vandross
May 16, 1992 Eric Clapton 18,699 / 18,699 $478,635
May 28, 1992 MC Hammer
November 3, 1992 Bruce Springsteen World Tour 17,720 / 17,720 $443,000
November 5, 1992 Frank Sinatra Shirley MacLaine 9,557 / 19,383
November 30, 1992 KISS Great White Revenge
December 23, 1992 Kenny Rogers 5,500 / 14,000
January 11, 1993 Bobby Brown
April 17, 1993 Alan Jackson
April 21, 1993 Elton John The One 18,444 / 18,444 $461,100
September 22, 1993 Luther Vandross
October 19, 1993 Depeche Mode Devotional
November 30, 1993 Bette Midler Experience the Divine
December 6, 1993 Crystal Gayle Eddie Rabbitt
February 5, 1994 Janet Jackson Janet
March 15, 1994 Billy Joel River of Dreams 19,017 / 19,017 $558,052
April 17, 1994 Rush Primus Counterparts
July 18, 1994 Meat Loaf Fury in the Slaughterhouse Everything Louder
July 19, 1994 Crosby, Stills & Nash Fleetwood Mac
July 30, 1994 ZZ Top Antenna
October 24, 1994 Eric Clapton Jimmie Vaughan
October 29, 1994 Vince Gill
October 30, 1994 James Taylor
April 10, 1995 Eagles Hell Freezes Over 14,358 / 14,358 $1,039,483 Gross record
April 13, 1995 Boyz II Men
May 1, 1995 Jimmy Page & Robert Plant The Tragically Hip
June 4, 1995 Melissa Etheridge
June 14, 1995 Yanni
August 11, 1995 Reba McEntire
August 28, 1995 Diana Ross Always is Forever
September 28, 1995 Elton John Made in England
October 13, 1995 Brooks & Dunn
November 12, 1995 Loretta Lynn
March 5, 1996 AC/DC Ballbreaker
April 1, 1996 Rod Stewart A Spanner in the Works 12,191 / 19,383 $457,842
April 11-13, 1996 Garth Brooks 56,726 / 56,726 $998,554
April 27, 1996 Bob Seger It's a Mystery 17,208 / 19,324 $484,709
July 22, 1996 The Cure The Swing
August 10, 1996 KISS D Generation Alive/Worldwide
August 30, 1996 Reba McEntire
October 1, 1996 The Smashing Pumpkins Grant Lee Buffalo Infinite Sadness 10,764 / 10,764 $269,100
October 2, 1996 Melissa Etheridge
October 12-13, 1996 Neil Diamond 35,550 / 38,766 $1,025,008
October 18, 1996 Tim McGraw
November 1, 1996 Rush Test for Echo
November 10, 1996 The Charlie Daniels Band
December 13, 1996 Vince Gill
February 14, 1997 Metallica Corrosion of Conformity Poor Touring Me
March 3, 1997 Toni Braxton Kenny G
April 10, 1997 Phil Collins The Trip into the Light 13,984 / 17,330 $556,479
May 29, 1997 Barry Manilow
August 29, 1997 Reba McEntire Brooks & Dunn 13,815 / 15,500 $552,600
December 17, 1997 Prince Graham Central Station Jam of the Year
September 2, 2010 Lady Gaga Semi Precious Weapons The Monster Ball Tour
June 8, 2011 Taylor Swift Speak Now World Tour 13,748 / 13,748 $897,042 The event was broadcast on national television during the 2011 CMT Music Awards when Swift accepted the award for Video of the Year via satellite. She did not attend the awards ceremony in order to perform the concert.
October 21, 2012 Justin Bieber Carly Rae Jepsen Believe Tour 14,957 / 14,957 $1,065,557
January 9, 2014 P!nk New Politics The Truth About Love Tour 14,663 / 14,663 $1,168,427
February 28, 2015 Ariana Grande Rixton
Cashmere Cat
The Honeymoon Tour 10,411 / 10,411 $484,877
September 25–26, 2015 Garth Brooks
Trisha Yearwood
Karyn Rochelle World Tour
March 3, 2016 Bruce Springsteen The River Tour 2016 17,653 / 17,653 $1,969,655 This is his eighth time playing the venue, the most of any artist.[16]
April 14, 2017 Eric Church Holdin' My Own Tour 17,931 / 17,931 $1,102,384
May 13, 2017 Tears for Fears
Hall and Oates
Allen Stone 9,915 / 11,063 $772,162 [17]
June 16, 2017 Tim McGraw and Faith Hill High Valley Soul2Soul 12,137 / 12,137 $974,098
July 25, 2017 Christina Aguilera The Northwestern Mutual 137th annual meeting
July 29, 2017 Roger Waters Us + Them
October 22, 2017 Janet Jackson State of the World Tour
December 4, 2017 Katy Perry TBA Witness: The Tour

Other events[edit]

Images[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Project. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved January 2, 2017. 
  2. ^ "2010–2011 Milwaukee Bucks Media Guide" (PDF). Milwaukee Bucks. Retrieved June 10, 2014. 
  3. ^ "Sports & Entertainment" (PDF). Thornton Tomasetti. Retrieved June 10, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Projects: Professional Sports Arenas". M-E Engineers, Inc. Archived from the original on September 8, 2012. Retrieved September 14, 2011. 
  5. ^ "BMO Harris Bradley Center". Ballparks.com. Retrieved June 10, 2014. 
  6. ^ a b Daykin, Tom (June 13, 2016). "As Bradley Center awaits wrecking ball, employees look to new arena". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Gannett Company. Retrieved May 18, 2017. 
  7. ^ Walker, Don (December 13, 2008). "Bradley Center a Home-Court Disadvantage". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved April 16, 2011. 
  8. ^ Walker, Don (March 26, 2009). "Doyle Budget Includes Help for Bradley Center". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved April 16, 2011. 
  9. ^ Walker, Don (June 10, 2010). "Bradley Center Unveils Details of New Scoreboard". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved April 16, 2011. 
  10. ^ Walker, Don (May 21, 2012). "Naming Rights for Bradley Center Sold to BMO Harris". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved May 21, 2012. 
  11. ^ Kirchen, Rich (September 18, 2013). "Incoming NBA Commissioner Silver Says Bradley Center Unfit for League". Milwaukee Business Journal. Retrieved June 10, 2014. 
  12. ^ Walkers, Don (April 17, 2014). "Kohl Sells Bucks for $550 Million; $200 Million Pledged for New Arena". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved June 10, 2014. 
  13. ^ Bayatpour, A.J. (July 28, 2015). "Wisconsin Assembly approves Milwaukee Bucks arena funding deal; Gov. Walker says he’ll sign it". WITI News. Associated Press. 
  14. ^ O'Brien, Brendan (August 12, 2015). "Wisconsin's Walker signs NBA arena spending plan for Milwaukee". Yahoo! Sports. Reuters. 
  15. ^ Daykin, Tom (4 June 2016). "Demolitions, Bradley Center renovations set stage for Bucks arena". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 18 July 2016. 
  16. ^ "concert announcement: Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band" (Press release). BMO Harris Bradley Center. December 4, 2015. 
  17. ^ Levy, Piet (May 14, 2017). "Hall & Oates branches out, Tears for Fears keeps it tight at Milwaukee double-bill". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Gannett Company. Retrieved May 18, 2017. It made for an odd pairing, but the one-two punch of Hall & Oates and Tears for Fears packed the BMO Harris Bradley Center on Saturday night. 

External links[edit]

Events and tenants
Preceded by
MECCA Arena
Home of the
Milwaukee Bucks

1988–2018
Succeeded by
Wisconsin Entertainment and Sports Center
Preceded by
Knickerbocker Arena
Albany, New York
Host of the
Frozen Four

1993
Succeeded by
Saint Paul Civic Center
St. Paul, Minnesota
Preceded by
Riverfront Coliseum
Cincinnati
Host of the
Frozen Four

1997
Succeeded by
FleetCenter
Boston
Preceded by
Value City Arena
Columbus, Ohio
Host of the
Frozen Four

2006
Succeeded by
Scottrade Center
St. Louis, Missouri