This article needs additional citations for verification. (January 2021)
|Address||100 Legends Way|
|Public transit|| MBTA: |
at North Station
|Owner||Delaware North Companies|
|Broke ground||April 29, 1993|
|Opened||September 30, 1995|
|Renovated||2006, 2009, 2014, 2019|
|Architect||Ellerbe Becket, Inc.|
|Project manager||Upton & Partners|
|Structural engineer||LeMessurier Consultants|
|Services engineer||Flack + Kurtz|
|General contractor||Morse Diesel International|
TD Garden, sometimes colloquially referred to as simply the Garden, is a multi-purpose arena in Boston, Massachusetts. It is named after its sponsor, TD Bank, a subsidiary of Canada's Toronto-Dominion Bank. It opened in 1995 as a replacement for the original Boston Garden and has been known as FleetCenter, and TD Banknorth Garden. The arena is located directly above the MBTA's North Station. It is the most visited sports and entertainment arena in New England, as nearly 3.5 million people visit the arena each year.
TD Garden is the home arena for the Boston Bruins of the National Hockey League and the Boston Celtics of the National Basketball Association. It is owned by food service and hospitality conglomerate Delaware North, whose CEO, Jeremy Jacobs, also owns the Bruins. It is the site of the annual Beanpot college hockey tournament, and hosts the annual Hockey East Championships. The arena has also hosted many major national sporting events including various rounds of the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament, NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Tournament, and NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Tournament, the 2014 United States Figure Skating Championships. TD Garden is set to host the 2021 Laver Cup, an international men’s tennis tournament.
Besides sporting events, the TD Garden has also served as a concert venue for numerous nationally touring acts in music and comedy.
As early as the late 1970s, the Bruins were looking for a new arena. The Boston Garden was approaching 50 years old at the time. The Jacobs family, who had bought the Bruins in 1975, was looking to build a 17,000-seat arena in suburban Boston after negotiations fell through with the city of Boston. The team nearly moved to Salem, New Hampshire around where the Mall at Rockingham Park is today. That fell through and the Bruins continued to play at Boston Garden. The Celtics, also looking for a new arena, considered moving to Revere.
In 1985, Boston Garden owner Delaware North was awarded the rights to construct a new arena by the Boston Redevelopment Authority and Mayor Raymond Flynn. However, poor economic conditions delayed the project.
On May 8, 1992, Delaware North announced that it had secured funding for a new arena in the form of $120 million worth of loans evenly split between Bank of Boston, Fleet Bank of Massachusetts and Shawmut National Corporation. That December, a bill approving construction of the new arena was killed in the Massachusetts Senate by Senate President William M. Bulger. Legislative leaders and Delaware North attempted to reach an agreement on plans for the new arena, but in February 1993 Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs announced that he was backing out of the project as a result of the legislature's demand that his company pay $3.5 million in "linkage payments". Massachusetts governor Bill Weld lent strong support to a "Chapter 15" piece of legislation that included a "Section 7" that explicitly required Delaware North to "administer, produce, promote and sponsor no less than three charitable events per year at the New Boston Garden" and pay the proceeds from such events to the Metropolitan District Commission (MDC), today known as the state's Department of Conservation and Recreation. Two weeks later, after a new series of negotiations, the two sides finally came to an agreement, and on February 26 the legislature passed a bill that allowed for construction of a new sports arena.
Construction began on April 29, 1993. Though the new arena was planned to be situated slightly north of the old facility, there was only nine inches (23 cm) of space between the two buildings when construction was completed. The site for the new arena occupied 3.2 acres (13,000 m2) and eventually cost $160 million. Construction was completed in 27 months, including seven weeks of delay caused by heavy snowfall.
On the evening of September 29, 1995, a farewell event was held in the old Boston Garden hosted by WBZ-TV news personality Liz Walker and CBS national news anchor Dan Rather. Attendees included Bruins legends such as Bobby Orr and Phil Esposito as well as Celtics greats Larry Bird and Red Auerbach. The ceremony concluded with the release of thousands of balloons into the rafters to the music of the Boston Pops. The Boston Globe stated that "all New England has lost a friend."
The following night, opening ceremonies were held at the FleetCenter, including performances by the Boston Pops, Walt Disney's World on Ice, Olympic figure skaters Nancy Kerrigan and Paul Wylie, James Taylor, Patti LaBelle and US3.
The Boston Bruins played their first game in the new arena on October 7, a 4-4 tie with the New York Islanders. The Boston Celtics lost their first game at the FleetCenter by a score of 101-100 to the Milwaukee Bucks on November 3.
During the construction phase, the naming rights to the "New Garden" were sold to Boston-based Shawmut Bank, and the arena was originally slated to open as the Shawmut Center. However, just as the arena was being completed, Shawmut merged with Fleet Financial Group, forcing every seat in the arena, which had all been stamped with the Shawmut logo, to be replaced. The interior color scheme also had to be adjusted from Shawmut's darker blue to Fleet's marginally lighter blue.
The name of the arena was expected to change as a result of the April 1, 2004 merger of FleetBoston Financial with Bank of America. On January 5, 2005, Delaware North announced an agreement under which the bank made a payment to be released from the remaining six years on the naming rights agreement. The agreement left Delaware North free to sell the naming rights to another sponsor. On March 3, 2005, Maine-based TD Banknorth, a U.S. subsidiary of Toronto-Dominion Bank, announced its purchase of the naming rights for $6 million per year. The first major event to be held after the announcement was the 2005 Hockey East Men's Ice Hockey Tournament. On July 1, 2005, the facility was officially renamed the TD Banknorth Garden in honor of the original Boston Garden.
In early 2005, while still searching for a long-term corporate sponsor, the FleetCenter conducted auctions on eBay to sell one-day naming rights. From February 10 to March 13, the FleetCenter sold the naming rights 30 different times. The net proceeds of $150,633.22 generated during the auction were donated to charities in the greater Boston area. The FleetCenter also made private arrangements with a few companies for one-day naming rights, and offered one-day rights in an employee raffle.
During the name auction, only twice were names reported to have been rejected. Kerry Konrad, a New York City lawyer and Yankees fan, won naming rights for March 1 with a bid of $2,300. He proposed the name "Derek Jeter Center" after the New York Yankees shortstop, a stab at fellow Harvard College alumnus and Boston Red Sox fan Jerry Rappaport Jr., with whom he had a 25-year-old rivalry. With the arena located in the home city of the Red Sox, the name did not sit well with the executives and was rejected. An agreement was reached in which Rappaport added $6,300 for a total bid of $8,600, representing the 86 years of the Curse of the Bambino, and named the arena "New Boston Garden, Home of the Jimmy Fund Champions". Fark.com founder Drew Curtis held a contest on his website to name the arena after he bought single-day rights. A user vote resulted in the name of "Fark.com UFIA Center", but the name was rejected because of its inappropriate meaning. The name eventually selected by Curtis and company was "Boston Garden".
- Including its present name, the TD Garden has had 33 different names.
- Celtics players dubbed it "The Jungle" during the team's 2002 playoff run.
In April 2008, TD Banknorth became TD Bank, after a merger with Commerce Bancorp, a New Jersey–based bank. Owner Delaware North Companies announced on April 15, 2009 that the building would be renamed TD Garden in July 2009.
Before the 2006–2007 season, the TD Garden underwent a major overhaul, installing a new HD entertainment board. For basketball, video advertising panels (installed by the NCAA for the 2006 Women's Final Four) replaced the traditional scrolling panels, and added a see-through shot clock, joining the FedExForum, Wells Fargo Center, State Farm Arena, Talking Stick Resort Arena, United Center, Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, and the Spectrum (this was done before the NBA mandate was installed in 2011). In addition, a vintage siren, just as the original Boston Garden had used, was added to replace the end-of-period horn for hockey only, a feature of the Montreal Canadiens, the Bruins' arch-rivals, at the Montreal Forum (now the Pepsi Forum shopping centre) and the current Centre Bell. In 2009, an LED energy efficient lighting system was added to the exterior of the building. The Boston Globe announced a $70 million project upgrade to TD Garden's concourses and Legends Club restaurant, along with technology upgrades and the relocation of a retail shop. Construction occurred in two phases, summer 2014 and then summer 2015.
On January 25, 2013, during a Celtics vs. Knicks game at the Garden, television announcer Marv Albert accused the TD Garden production crew for being one of those arenas that "constantly" use fake sound effects to intensify the crowd reactions on nationally televised games (which is very similar to "sweetening" on television); however, the official Twitter account of the Boston Celtics stated that the Celtics have never used artificial crowd noise. Following their 2011 Stanley Cup Finals win, the Bruins changed their previous Stanley Cup banners to reflect the changes in the team's main jersey logo through time during their past five Cup wins, as the current logo adorns the 2011 Cup win's banner.
Just before the 2018-19 series of pre-season NHL games began for the Bruins at TD Garden, a serious upgrade to the interior overhead lighting of the playing surface had been completed: as with the NHL hockey arenas for the Colorado Avalanche, Dallas Stars, San Jose Sharks and Tampa Bay Lightning, all-new LED-based overhead lighting technology now brilliantly light up Bruins and Celtics home games at TD Garden.
The arena is primarily the home venue for the NBA's Boston Celtics and the NHL's Boston Bruins. It has hosted the 1996 NHL All-Star Game, the 2008 and 2010 NBA Finals, and the 2011, 2013, and the 2019 Stanley Cup Finals. While dominant in their previous arena, Boston Garden, the Celtics and Bruins were initially much less successful in their new home as both teams missed the playoffs numerous times and failed to make their league's conference finals until 2008. That year the Celtics defeated their arch-rival Los Angeles Lakers in six games, clinching the 2008 NBA championship in the Garden. The Bruins overcame the Vancouver Canucks in seven games to capture the 2011 Stanley Cup, winning all games in the Garden with lopsided scores (8-1, 4-0, and 5-2) and then taking the championship on the road at Rogers Arena. In the 2013 Stanley Cup playoffs, the Bruins overcame a 4-1 deficit in the deciding Game 7 against the Toronto Maple Leafs to win 5-4 in overtime, en route to making it to the Finals; the Chicago Blackhawks hoisted the Stanley Cup in the Garden after a stunning comeback in the final minute of Game Six. The Bruins failed to win the Cup in 2019, hosting the event but losing a critical Game 7 to the St. Louis Blues, 4-1.
Eddie Palladino is the current public address announcer for Celtics games, while Jim Martin is the former public address announcer for Bruins games (Currently in transition). Ron Poster is the arena organist.
As the former Boston Garden had from 1954 through 1995 - and the still-standing Matthews Arena had for its start in 1952 - the TD Garden is the home of the annual Beanpot college hockey tournament between the Boston University Terriers, Boston College Eagles, Harvard University Crimson and Northeastern University Huskies. The facility has hosted the 2001 U.S. Figure Skating Championships, the 1996 and 2000 US Gymnastics Trials, and the 1998, 2004 and 2015 NCAA Men's Frozen Four.
High school championships and tournaments for the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association are annually hosted at the TD Garden. Events include ice hockey and basketball championships. The Super 8 is one of the popular events that fans and students attend.
TD Garden is one of two NBA arenas (along with Amway Center, home of the Orlando Magic) with parquet floors. The Celtics are best known for the tradition of the parquet floor from their Boston Garden years, originally built after World War II because of cost and the scarcity of lumber in that time. The Celtics are also the only NBA team to use an oak floor, whereas the other 29 teams use maple floors. However, a traditional floor was used in the 2006 NCAA Women's Final Four, the 2009 NCAA Men's East Regional and the 2018 NCAA Men's East Regional (NCAA rules require a special NCAA-specification floor be used for all tournament games). When the 2012 NCAA Men's East Regional was held at TD Garden, a maple parquet floor was used with the same NCAA-specific design.
In 2021, TD Garden will host the 2021 Laver Cup in September. The Laver Cup is a men's tennis tournament between teams from Europe and the rest of the world. It will be held from 24 until 26 September.
Ricky Hatton began his 'American dream' here on May 13, 2006, he stepped up to welterweight to fight WBA world champion Luis Collazo. After knocking Collazo down after seconds into the first round, Hatton was made to work hard to earn a unanimous point win.
On November 13, 2016, the arena hosted the Kellogg's Tour of Gymnastics Champions.
Mixed martial arts
In August 2010, the TD Garden hosted UFC 118, which was the first time that the UFC held an event in Boston. UFC president Dana White confirmed that the UFC would return to The Garden on August 17, 2013. The TD Garden hosted UFC on Fox Sports 1: 1, the launch of the new Fox Sports 1 cable channel, on August 17, 2013. This was the second UFC event to take place at the TD Garden. The UFC returned on January 18, 2015 for UFC Fight Night: McGregor vs. Siver, and again on January 17, 2016 for UFC Fight Night: Dillashaw vs. Cruz. On January 20, 2018, the TD Garden hosted UFC 220.
WWE professional wrestling events are held in the arena.
On July 26 to 29, 2004, the TD Garden (then the FleetCenter) was the host of the 2004 Democratic National Convention, in which then Senator of Massachusetts John Kerry was nominated as the Democratic candidate for the 2004 Presidential Election. The convention was also famous for then Senator and future President Barack Obama's keynote speech which began the speculation of his running for President in the 2008 Presidential Election.
The Hub on Causeway
In May 2013, Delaware North Companies and Boston Properties proposed plans to construct a multi-purpose 3 tower structure on the former site of the original Boston Garden. The complex would encompass 1.87 million square feet (174,000 m2), of which 300,000 square feet (28,000 m2) will be allotted for retail space and 600,000 square feet (56,000 m2) for commercial offices. It will also include 500 residential units, a 200-room hotel (CitizenM Boston North Station), and an 800-space underground parking garage. Construction began in late 2015. The project is being completed in three stages. The first stage is the podium that includes shopping, entertainment, dining, new access to the MBTA North Station Green Line and Orange Line, and a new entrance to the TD Garden and North Station. It also includes an expansion to the existing North Station Garage that sits underneath North Station and the TD Garden. The second phase includes two buildings built on top of the west side of the podium. One building will be apartments, the other a hotel. The third phase is an office building that will sit on top of the east side of the podium.
Community fundraising controversy
In the spring of 2017, a group of local teenagers from the Hyde Square Task Force group investigated the terms of TD Garden's original development agreement, and concluded that its owners had never satisfied a legal requirement to host three fundraisers a year to benefit the agency that oversees Boston’s recreational facilities. By mid-August 2017, the Massachusetts governor at the time of the TD Garden's original construction, Bill Weld, reminded Jeremy Jacobs about the deal he had made with the state's government in 1993 concerning the agreement. As a result, in August 2017, the TD Garden agreed to pay the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation nearly $2 million.
Located in TD Garden is The Sports Museum (also known as "The Sports Museum of New England"). The museum's exhibits focus on the history of various sports in the Boston area, including the Boston Bruins, the Boston Celtics, the New England Patriots, the Boston Red Sox and many more.
Just as the Boston Garden was, the TD Garden is built on top of Boston's North Station, a major transportation hub. The Commuter Rail waiting area becomes crowded during events due to this design: the fans shared a relatively small area with commuters and several fast food concessions. (There is a concourse on the second floor which is about the same size as the former main ground floor concourse, but this is utilized only as an entryway for the arena.) Work finished on the expanded North Station concourse in early 2007. A new, larger, railway concourse gives railway passengers a waiting area which does not interfere with patrons entering or leaving the Garden.
Connections to the Orange Line and Green Line are near the eastern entrance to the Garden. The Green Line ran on the Causeway Street Elevated in front of the building until a tunnel under it was opened in June 2004. The then-disused Elevated was used as a platform for security forces during the 2004 Democratic National Convention, then demolished slightly afterwards.
Awards and recognitions
The arena has been recognized by many industry publications as one of the top arenas in the country. Arena industry publication Venues Today ranked the TD Garden as the No. 3 arena in the country for 2006. Additionally, the TD Garden has been recognized with the following recent awards and achievements:
- 2007 TD Garden selected as finalist for National Sports Forum Achievement Award
- 2008 TD Garden receives EPA Award
- 2009 Nominated for Sports Facility of the Year by Sports Business Journal
- 2019 NBA Fan of the Year: GreenRunsDeep
- Matthews Arena, formerly Boston Arena, the Bruins' original home rink, built in 1910 and still in use
- List of indoor arenas by capacity
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Bill Weld to Jeremy Jacobs: Do the right thing and live up to the agreement you made with the state of Massachusetts when you got the go-ahead to build a new Boston Garden...Back in 1993, then-governor Weld championed legislation that allowed Jacobs, the wealthy owner of the Garden and the Boston Bruins, to obtain air rights and property easements needed to build a new arena. The final product involved a flurry of last-minute horse-trading. That’s how Chapter 15 — An Act Furthering the Establishment of a Multi-Purpose Arena and Transportation Center — came to include Section 7, a provision requiring Jacobs to “administer, produce, promote and sponsor no less than three charitable events per year at the New Boston Garden” and pay the net proceeds to the Metropolitan District Commission (MDC), now the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR).
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Along with arenas in San Jose, Dallas, Tampa and Colorado, TD Garden added LED lighting in the offseason...Bruins captain Zdeno Chára said the changes were obvious as soon as the players took the ice.
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