Comcast-Spectacor said Tuesday it will close the 42-year-old Spectrum arena this year, making room for a new mixed-use entertainment complex called Philly Live!
The arena is now home to a hockey team (the Phantoms) and an indoor soccer team (the Kixx), and will close when their respective seasons end. The 76ers of the National Basketball Association and the Flyers of the National Hockey League moved to a nearby new arena, the Wachovia Center, in 1996.
“This has been one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make,” Comcast-Spectacor chairman Ed Snider said in a statement on a new Web page, rememberthespectrum.com, set up as a tribute site. “The Spectrum is my baby. It’s one of the greatest things that has ever happened to me, but after a lot of thinking and discussions, we all feel it is in our best interest to close the Spectrum at the conclusion of the upcoming 2008-09 Philadelphia Phantoms and Kixx seasons.”
Comcast-Spectacor (a Comcast unit) owns the Spectrum, the Wachovia Center and development rights on the property. In January it disclosed plans for the Philly Live! complex with developer Cordish Co.