Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center Adds Localhost Esports Arena

September 27th, 2019

The 23-year-old stadium is the home of the NBA’s 76ers and NHL’s Flyers, and is in the midst of a $250M USD renovation campaign

The arena will be open to attendees of sporting events, but also has a dedicated entrance and will host its own separate events.

Comcast Spectacor’s Wells Fargo Center—the stadium of the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers and NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers—has added a Localhost esports arena in partnership with Nerd Street Gamers.

The venue is hosted within the stadium itself and outfitted with gaming PCs, and will be open during sporting events for attendees to use. However, the space also has a dedicated entrance separate from the arena’s own, and will host esports tournaments and events on days in which the Wells Fargo Center isn’t hosting its own events.

In a release, Nerd Street Gamers—which owns and operates the Localhost gaming center brand—called the new location the “first dedicated public esports space in a pro stadium.” The Localhost arena will be open this Sunday during the Overwatch League Grand Finals 2019, and then open officially on Oct. 9 for the Flyers’ first home game of the season against the New Jersey Devils.

“Through this new gaming space and partnership, we have created another unique destination for our guests within the Wells Fargo Center,” said Flyers and Wells Fargo Center President of Business Operations Valerie Camillo, in a release. “We know that many of our fans were first exposed to hockey through video games, so this gaming space will provide a way for fans to show off their skills.”

The Wells Fargo Center, which opened in 1996, is currently in the midst of a “Transformation 2020” renovation campaign. Some $250M is being spent to modernize and upgrade the facility.

Earlier this week, Comcast Spectacor and real estate partner The Cordish Companies broke ground on Fusion Arena, a $50M+ esports arena that is being built for the Overwatch League’s Philadelphia Fusion. It will be built in the same South Philadelphia Sports Complex, which houses the Wells Fargo Center along with the Philadelphia Eagles’ Lincoln Financial Field and the Philadelphia Phillies’ Citizens Bank Park. Fusion Arena is set to open in early 2021.

Also this week, the Pittsburgh Knights announced the opening of a branded Gaming Zone within the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Heinz Field stadium, although it is positioned as a trial activation rather than a dedicated space for events.