Fiserv Forum viewed from the northeast in July 2018
|Full name||Fiserv Forum|
|Former names||Wisconsin Entertainment and Sports Center (during construction)|
|Address||1111 Vel R. Phillips Avenue|
|Owner||Wisconsin Center District|
|Record attendance||19,843 (December 30, 2018)|
|Broke ground||June 18, 2016|
|Opened||August 26, 2018|
|Construction cost||$524 million |
($547 million in 2018 dollars)
Eppstein Uhen Architects
|Project manager||ICON Venue Group|
|Services engineer||M–E Engineers, Inc.|
|General contractor||Mortenson Construction|
|Milwaukee Bucks (NBA) (2018–present)|
Marquette Golden Eagles (NCAA) (2018–present)
Fiserv Forum (/
Despite being one of the premier NBA facilities when completed in 1988, the BMO Harris Bradley Center was one of the oldest active NBA arenas by the end of the Bucks' tenancy in 2018. Only Madison Square Garden in New York City and Oracle Arena in Oakland were older than the Bradley Center; however, both Madison Square Garden and Oracle Arena were substantially renovated during their lifetimes, with Oracle Arena scheduled to be replaced by the new Chase Center in San Francisco in September 2019. The funds for the building of the BMO Harris Bradley Center were donated by Jane Bradley Pettit and husband Lloyd Pettit without any provision for the building's long-term capital needs or annual operating expenses. Although the facility was self-sufficient, the BMO Harris Bradley Center tenants, such as the Bucks, were at a disadvantage compared with other NBA teams because of the arrangement.
Building a new downtown arena was proposed by former Bucks owner and former U.S. Senator Herb Kohl. There was considerable discussion in the region about the idea of a publicly funded arena and ultimately no resolution was reached. 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 needed $23 million in renovations, so they reportedly agreed to raise the remaining $18 million on their own.
On September 18, 2013, then-deputy NBA commissioner Adam Silver toured the arena and said it was a few thousand square feet short of NBA standards, and also lacked numerous amenities. On April 16, 2014, 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. Soon afterward, the NBA gave the Bucks an ultimatum—get a new arena, or be close to completing a new arena, by the start of the 2017–18 season. If not, the league would buy the franchise from Lasry and Edens and sell the Bucks to one of two prospecting ownership groups; one in Las Vegas and the other in Seattle, which would have meant the certain departure of the Bucks from Milwaukee. On July 15, 2015, the Wisconsin Senate approved funding for the new arena by a 21–10 margin, and on July 28, 2015, the Wisconsin State Assembly approved funding by a 52-34 margin. On August 12, 2015, Governor Scott Walker signed the arena spending plan at Wisconsin State Fair Park in West Allis, Wisconsin.
The Milwaukee city council voted 12-3 on September 22, 2015, to approve the plan. The city's Plan Commission gave unanimous conditional approval to the Bucks' general development plans for land in the Park East Corridor on November 23, while acknowledging possible parking problems in the area.
On April 13, 2016, the Bucks signed a 30-year lease to play in the new arena. In addition Marquette University has agreed to lease the arena for its home games, beginning in 2018.
On May 2, 2017, Milwaukee Bucks President Peter Feigin stated that construction of the arena remained on schedule and on budget. Feigin's announcement was from the site of the new arena, after the first roof truss was installed and bolted into place. The roof was officially topped off on August 24, 2017. On August 26, 2018, Fiserv Forum was officially opened in a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the 4th annual Bucks Block Party. The first live event at Fiserv Forum was The Killers with Violent Femmes on September 4, 2018.
The Bucks played their inaugural game at the Fiserv Forum during the preseason against the Chicago Bulls on October 3, 2018. They won the game 116–82. Their regular season home opener was played on October 19, 2018, against the Indiana Pacers. The Bucks won, 118-101. The basketball attendance record for the Forum was set on December 27, 2018 when 18,058 turned out for a game against the New York Knicks. The Bucks won, 112-98.  The Bucks' first season in the Forum was a great success, with the Bucks finishing the regular season with their first 60-win season since 1980-81. They also went 33-8 at the Forum, the second-best home record in the NBA. On April 14, 2019, the Forum hosted its first NBA playoff game, Game 1 of the first round between the Bucks and the Detroit Pistons. The Bucks won, 121-86.
Local companies including Johnson Controls, Miller Brewing, Harley-Davidson, and BMO Harris Bank have agreed to be partners with the Bucks, but not for naming rights. On July 26, 2018, the Bucks agreed to a 25-year naming rights deal with Fiserv, a financial services technology company based in the Milwaukee suburb of Brookfield.
Concerts and events
Planning and design
The Milwaukee Bucks released the first images and details of their vision for the development of a new multi-purpose arena and sports and entertainment district to revitalize downtown Milwaukee on April 8, 2015. The images depicted early conceptual drawings of a new multi-purpose venue and entertainment district that will anchor a new development vision activated by sports, entertainment, residential and office uses. The site, which primarily sits between 4th Street and 6th Street from State Street to McKinley Avenue, will seamlessly link with active development on all sides, including Old World Third Street, Schlitz Park, The Brewery, the Milwaukee riverfront, Water Street and the Wisconsin Center.
Populous and HNTB, two firms from Kansas City, lead the arena design team with participation from Milwaukee firm Eppstein Uhen. The arena is intended to be the focal point of a "live block" zone that includes public space surrounded by both commercial and residential development. Initial renderings of the arena showed a transparent facade and a curved roof and side meant to evoke the water forms of nearby Lake Michigan and the Milwaukee River. The new plaza outside the Forum is known as the "Deer District", with an unofficial road/walking path called "Herb Kohl Way," home to restaurants and a beer garden where people can gather to watch sporting events on a big screen television.
It also features a layout and equipment for an NHL/NCAA-regulation ice hockey rink and ice shows such as Disney on Ice, thus it still will be able to host the NCAA Frozen Four as the BMO Harris Bradley Center did in the past in 1993, 1997 and 2006. However, the American Hockey League's Milwaukee Admirals returned to the UW–Milwaukee Panther Arena in the 2016-17 season as they were not approached to play games in the arena. The Bucks are contractually bound not to recruit current tenants of the Panther Arena to move their events to the Fiserv Forum.
Fiserv Forum has the largest symmetric scoreboard in the NBA.
- Schumacher, Mary Louise (September 11, 2018). "Schumacher: Fiserv Forum's architecture wonderful inside, flawed outside". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved September 11, 2018. Review from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's art and architecture critic.
- Radcliffe, JR (July 27, 2018). "The new Bucks arena is called Fiserv Forum, and naturally, everybody freaked out". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved November 21, 2018.
- Jannene, Jeramey (September 28, 2018). "Bike to a Bucks Game". Urban Milwaukee. Retrieved November 21, 2018.
- Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Retrieved January 2, 2019.
- "Milwaukee Bucks Arena". ICON Venue Group. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
- "Milwaukee Bucks – Basketball Arena". ZS, LLC. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
- "Arenas". M–E Engineers, Inc. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
- Barrett, Rick (March 21, 2016). "Mortenson Construction to Build Milwaukee Bucks' New Arena". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
- Monroe, Nick (August 26, 2018). "Fiserv Forum Opens". Bucks.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. Retrieved August 26, 2018.
- "Milwaukee Bucks President and Owner Herb Kohl Introduces New Team Ownership and Announces $100 Million Gift for Arena". Bucks.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. April 16, 2014. Retrieved May 13, 2018.
- "Bucks Announce $1 Billion Arena Package". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. March 8, 2015. Retrieved April 8, 2015.
- "Bucks Break Ground on New Multi-Purpose Arena". Bucks.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. June 18, 2016. Retrieved May 13, 2018.
- ""Engine for future growth:" Milwaukee Bucks, Design Team Release Vision for New Multi-Purpose Arena". WITI. Milwaukee. April 7, 2015. Retrieved April 8, 2015.
- Nelson, James B. (June 5, 2018). "Bucks receive occupancy permit for new arena less than two years after groundbreaking". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved July 24, 2018.
- Walker, Don (December 13, 2008). "Bradley Center a Home-Court Disadvantage". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved April 16, 2011.
- Walker, Don (March 26, 2009). "Doyle Budget Includes Help for Bradley Center". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved April 16, 2011.
- Kirchen, Rich (September 18, 2013). "Incoming NBA Commissioner Silver Says Bradley Center Unfit for League". Milwaukee Business Journal. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
- Walker, Don (April 17, 2014). "Kohl Sells Bucks for $550 Million; $200 Million Pledged for New Arena". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
- "Wisconsin Assembly approves Milwaukee Bucks arena funding deal; Gov. Walker says he'll sign it". FOX6Now.com. July 28, 2015. Retrieved July 3, 2017.
- By Brendan O'Brien (August 12, 2015). "Wisconsin's Walker signs NBA arena spending plan for Milwaukee". Sports.yahoo.com. Retrieved July 3, 2017.
- Posted 5:13 pm, November 23, 2015, by Theo Keith (November 23, 2015). "Plan Commission approves general Bucks arena development plans; but new parking problems arise". Fox6now.com. Retrieved July 3, 2017.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
- Terry Sater (April 13, 2016). "Done deal: Milwaukee Bucks sign 30-year lease for arena". Wisn.com. Retrieved July 3, 2017.
- Romell, Rick (June 18, 2016). "Arena groundbreaking brings enthusiasm for Bucks". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved January 12, 2017.
- "Tickets - Kevin Hart: The Irresponsible Tour - Milwaukee, WI - Wisconsin Entertainment and Sports Center - September 13, 2018 19:00:00". Wisconsinesc.com. Retrieved May 21, 2018.
- "'The Killers' to perform at grand opening concert for new Bucks arena". WTMJ-TV Milwaukee. July 26, 2018.
- Velazquez, Matt (October 3, 2018). "Bucks break in Fiserv Forum in style during preseason opener". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 4, 2018.
- Velazquez, Matt (October 19, 2018). "Bucks 118, Pacers 101: The long wait ends with a victory at Fiserv Forum". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved October 20, 2018.
- Verhovek, John (March 11, 2019). "Milwaukee chosen as 2020 Democratic National Convention site". ABC News. Retrieved March 11, 2019.
- Nelson, James B. (October 9, 2017). "Peter Feigin puts international spin on pitch for Milwaukee Bucks arena naming rights". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved July 27, 2017.
- Heitner, Darren (October 16, 2017). "Milwaukee Bucks Want Naming Rights Sponsor At $7-10 Million Per Year". Forbes. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
- "Fiserv Forum is the New Home of the Milwaukee Bucks". Bucks.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. July 26, 2018. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
- Nelson, James B. (July 26, 2018). "Milwaukee Bucks and Fiserv Co. strike 25-year naming rights deal for new downtown arena". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
- "Park East and designs for arena". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved April 8, 2015.
- http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/news/2015/02/25/milwaukeebucks-name-eppstein-uhen-populous-hntb-as.html. Retrieved January 14, 2019. Missing or empty
- About Mary Louise Schumacher (April 8, 2015). "Design for new Bucks arena aims to 'embrace idea of modern architecture'". Jsonline.com. Retrieved July 3, 2017.
- "Early design of new Milwaukee Bucks arena". Wisn.com. April 8, 2015. Retrieved July 3, 2017.
- http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/news/2016/04/23/club-seats-will-outweigh-suites-at-new.html. Retrieved January 14, 2019. Missing or empty
- Kirchen, Rich (April 25, 2016). "Milwaukee Bucks arena will include ice rink to host NHL, NCAA games". Milwaukee Business Journal. Retrieved April 25, 2016.
- Carlton, Jimmy (February 21, 2017). "Bucks introduce NBA's largest center-hung scoreboard for new arena". OnMilwaukee. Retrieved October 21, 2017.