1st Mariner Arena
The 1st Mariner Arena was the home arena of the Baltimore Mariners. The arena was earlier known as the Baltimore Arena and Baltimore Civic Center but was renamed after the 1st Mariner Bank purchased the naming rights from the city for USD75 000 annually. The contract stretches for ten years. The Arena is located in Baltimore about a block from from the Baltimore Convention Center. It is located on the corner of Baltimore Street and Hopkins Place. The Baltimore arena can seat up to 14 000 people. The exact seating capacity depends on the usage of the arena and is an example 13,650 for Concerts, 12,500 for Basketball and 11,286 for Ice Hockey.
It is an old arena that dates back to 1962. The arena is owned by the city and receives about 800 000 visitors a year.
The 1st Mariner Arena is used for a multitude of different purposes ranging from sports events like indoor football to concerts and speeches as well as events that are part show, part sport such as WWE events. The area has seen many important games and speeches during its almost 50 year old history.
The 1st Mariner Arena is planned to be replaced but is allowed to operate while a new arena is being planned and constructed. The plans for a new arena started back in 2004 when it was discovered that the Maryland Stadium Authority were about to make a feasibility study on whether or not it would be possible to build a new arena on the same spot as the old arena now stands. Those plans have since been abandoned and although it is not sure where the new arena will be built it is highly unlikely it will be built on the site of the old arena as the city want to keep it operational until the new arena is completed.
The initial plan was to build a smaller arena that would seat only 15,000 - 16,000 people however this has later been changed and the plans that are being made today is for an arena that would seat 18500 people. The difference might not seem very big but is very significant since 18 000 is the minimum for any arena to be allowed to host a NHL or NBA team and Baltimore would hence by building a smaller arena be giving up any hope of attracting a franchise to the city.
The plans for the arena have changed many times over the planing period and is likely to change again before the final decision is made and construction is started. All we can do is wait and see if we want to know how the new Baltimore arena will end up and what features it will feature when it is finally built.
The following sport team have had the 1st Mariner Arena as their home arena:
Baltimore Bullets (NBA) (1963–1973)
Baltimore Blades (WHA) (1974–1975)
Baltimore Skipjacks (AHL) (1981–1993)
Baltimore Thunder (MILL / NLL) (1987–1999)
Baltimore Bayrunners (IBL) (1999–2000)
Baltimore Blast (MISL I) (1980–1992)
Baltimore Spirit / Blast (NPSL/MISL II/NISL) (1992–present)
Baltimore Bandits (AHL) (1995–1997)
Baltimore Blackbirds (AIFA) (2007)
Baltimore Mariners (AIFA) (2008–2010)
Baltimore Clippers (AHL / SHL) (1962–1977)
Baltimore Charm (LFL) (2011-present)