By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor
In less than three weeks, Philadelphians will have access to the city’s newest entertainment complex, a 60,000-square-foot venue that will most likely become a hot spot for sports fans and residents alike. Xfinity Live! was built on the site of the former Spectrum in the Wells Fargo Complex of South Philadelphia, which was demolished almost one year ago to make room for what the Philadelphia Inquirer calls the new “Cathedral of Sport.”
The grand opening on March 30 (one week ahead of schedule) will coincide with the Flyers’ and Sixers’ playoff runs and will be marked by a free, outdoor live concert performed by Third Eye Blind, scheduled to start at 8 p.m. According to the Lehigh Valley Music Blog, this will be the first show in a series of regular entertainment performances of local, regional and national acts that the venue hopes to attract over the next year.
Formerly known as Philly Live!, Xfinity Live! was developed at 1100 Pattison Ave. by a joint venture between local sports and entertainment company Comcast Spectacor and Baltimore-based developer The Cordish Company. One of the venue’s main attractions is the NBC Sports Arena featuring a custom-built, 37-foot HD television flanked by two sets of nine 65-inch flat panels on the left and right sides, plus eight more 65-inch flat panels below, according to an exclusive story by the Philadelphia Inquirer. With a $3 million price tag for the high-definition audio and visual equipment alone and around $60 million invested in the development, Xfinity Live! is poised to become “the most exciting venue of its type,” said Comcast-Spectacor chairman Ed Snider.
During the day the complex will be dedicated to family-friendly recreational activities while at night it will turn into an adult-oriented theme park sparkled with lounges, bars and dining options such as an upscale Spectrum Grille, a PBR Bar & Grill (a country-western themed restaurant based on the Professional Bull Riders association with a mechanical bull), and 20,000 free parking spaces during the non-event nights.
Photo courtesy of www.xfinitylive.com