Stepping before a sold-out, 14,000-person audience this Friday, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band will kick off what developers hope will be glorious new days for an old Baltimore arena.

Following 10 months of fast-track renovation, the Oak View Group has completed a $250 million transformation of the 1962 Baltimore Civic Center into the modern CFG Bank Arena.

Described as a world-class entertainment and sports venue, the redeveloped arena includes:

  • A 65-foot expansion of the arena floor and 14,000 seats with clear view of the stage;
  • 12 party suites with stage views and 26 ‘bunker suites’;
  • New food offerings including Shaq’s Big Chicken, Jimmy’s Famous Seafood, Koko’s Bavarian, Charm City Favorites and an online ordering system; and
  • Improved stage and back-stage areas to accommodate more acts and easier setups.

CFG Bank Arena officials estimate the venue will attract 1 million visitors annually to an expanded and improved roster of events. They expect to host 130 events annually, including about 60 concerts (up from 20-25 concerts annually in recent years) and 40 A-list events (an increase from just a couple in recent years).

The arena’s 2023 lineup already includes: Lizzo, Janet Jackson, The Eagles, Adam Sandler, Anita Baker, Andrea Bocelli, John Mayer, Queen + Adam Lambert, Bryan Adams, Stars on Ice, a Monster Truck Rally and the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s Greatest Show On Earth.

That influx of activity and people is expected to drive business to nearby restaurants, bars and hotels. The redevelopment is also supporting other economic benefits for the city and region. The renovation supported more than 500 construction jobs and awarded 37 percent of subcontracts to local, minority-owned companies. For the duration of its 30-year lease on the arena property, Oak View Group will pay the city $1.75 million annually.