As a venue, The Q is the largest driver of economic activity in Cuyahoga County, hosting more than 200 diverse ticketed events that attract over two million visitors to downtown Cleveland each year.

Community marketers use The Q as a core asset in their efforts to bring major events to Cleveland and represent our community across the nation and the world.

Ownership

Quicken Loans Arena is a publicly-owned civic asset and a key driver of Cleveland’s momentum. Although publicly-owned, the Cavaliers paid for 100% of all operating, maintenance, repair, and capital expenses for the first 22 years of the arena’s operating life.

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The Cavaliers and Dan Gilbert Have Privately-Invested Over $400 Million in Quicken Loans Arena.

The Q's Impact

Delivering a powerful Return On Investment to Greater Cleveland.

The Q is a huge magnet for downtown Cleveland, hosting more than 200 diverse ticketed events and over 1,400 private events that draw over 2 million patrons each year – many of whom reside outside of Cuyahoga County.

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In 2016, The Q generated $245 million in direct spending and $44 million in state, county and city tax revenue from different streams, including income, sales, admission and hotel bed taxes. Since the arena's inception in 1994, The Q has delivered an estimated economic impact of $2.7 billion in direct spending, helped create and support 2,500 jobs annually, and generated nearly $500 million in tax revenue.


The Q is delivering a powerful return on investment to the Greater Cleveland area.

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The RNC, NBA Finals and other events focused worldwide attention on Cleveland.

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The future impact of the Transformation is massive for Cleveland.

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Cleveland’s Window to the World

The perception of our community is often shaped by images from inside and outside The Q and around downtown Cleveland that are broadcasted to viewers during nationally and internationally televised events at the arena. Most recently, the RNC, the 2nd largest media event in the world with over 15,000 media members, carried the Cleveland name and scene to every corner of the globe. Journalists from around the world were downtown for the NBA Finals, which were broadcast in 215 countries and 47 languages.

Quicken Loans Arena has not only generated huge economic dividends, but it has helped boost Cleveland’s image and reputation. Events like the Republican National Convention and NBA Finals present incredible opportunities to showcase Cleveland to the world. The value of this marketing exposure has changed the dialogue and visual representation about Cleveland both domestically and around the globe. The Transformation of our arena ensures we build on the positive momentum currently in place.

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Benefits

We’re up against other markets to bring conventions, concerts, sports and other major, impactful events to Cleveland. To put us in the best position to compete and WIN, we need to responsibly modernize and transform this key public asset now. Without this, our community’s marketers will be at a significant disadvantage when competing to host major events.

The Cavs would extend their lease to 2034 – at least 40 years in The Q, one of the longest terms in the NBA, where the average life of a facility is 22 years. The Q today is nearly 23 years old (The Richfield Coliseum operated for 20 years).

The Transformation will bolster the arena’s ability to attract additional national and international events, like the Republican National Convention, a future NBA All-Star Week, and more.

The Transformation will save hundreds of millions of dollars compared to building a new arena, which can easily range in cost between $500 and $750+ million.

The Transformation will help continue and sustain development momentum in downtown Cleveland and the Gateway Neighborhood.

Why Now?

Quicken Loans Arena opened in 1994, but is now the second oldest arena in the NBA without a major upgrade. The Transformation of The Q will eliminate any discussion about the need for the construction of a much more expensive new venue (which can easily be in the $500-$750+ million range), extending the useful life of the arena to 40 years -- one of the longest terms for an NBA arena. The average life of an NBA arena is 22 years. The Q today is nearly 23 years old (the Richfield Coliseum operated for 20 years). It will also result in extending the Cavs lease through 2034, thus ensuring that this economic dynamo will continue to generate multiple benefits for Greater Cleveland for many, many more years to come.


Competition is Fierce


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What Are The Challenges The Q Arena Is Facing?

» Narrow concourse with bottleneck conditions during events

» Small entry areas lead to bottlenecks & longer wait times

» Currently difficult navigating through The Q

» No pre- or post-event gathering space for visitors

» Outdoor lines in cold weather

» Lack of street activation and interaction with neighborhood


How Do We Compare?

Nationwide Arena - Columbus, OH

Golden 1 Center - Sacramento, CA

Amway Center - Orlando, FL


Transforming The Q Arena Into A World Class Facility

Increase Public Areas For Entry, Gathering, Event Activities & Flow

Create A Welcoming Civic Space And Connect To The City By Maximizing Transparency

Improve Public Fan Spaces And Visitor Experience By Offering A Broad Range Of Spaces From New Dining/Bar Areas To Fan Zones And Activated New Neighborhoods


Arena Public Space Square Footage Comparison


Transforming The Q with these competitive, functional needs would provide community marketers and event planners with critical, needed selling features when competing to host major events in Cleveland:

Upgrading The Q will eliminate any potential discussion about the need for the construction of a much more expensive new venue and will also result in extending the Cavs lease through 2034, thus ensuring that this economic dynamo will continue to generate multiple benefits for Greater Cleveland for many, many more years to come.

Make the arena’s interior more visible from the outside, making The Q more contemporary, inviting, marketable and better connected to the City.

Create an enhanced, dramatic visual sense of arrival to downtown Cleveland with Gateway as its front door.

Expand The Q’s public areas including critical entryways, concourses, neighborhood zones, and ancillary function space by almost 40% across multiple event levels. This will also open up The Q, making outdated and bottle-necked public areas much less constricted.

Provide large public gathering places for event attendees prior to events, during event breaks and for satellite activities occurring at the same time to main events in the arena bowl.

Community Impact

Majority Owner Dan Gilbert and the Rock Ventures Family of Companies have invested more than $1.5 billion in downtown Cleveland and Cuyahoga County in just over 10 years. Those investments will continue to grow.

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That includes 12 companies with more than 4,500 employees and $100s of millions for key civic projects and updates like the Public Square renovation, the landmark Higbee building and Tower City. The Cavaliers organzation has also delivered more than $42 million in community, civic and charitable funding and giving over the last 20+ years.


Our City, Our Neighborhoods, Our Community

Over 20+ Years, the Cleveland Cavaliers Have Demonstrated a Deep and Caring Commitment to the Community, Supporting a Full Roster of Outreach Initiatives that Address Important Social Issues. As Part of that Commitment, the Quicken Loans Arena Organization Continues to Work with a Healthy and Growing Base of Diverse Minority and Women-Owned Northeast Ohio Businesses.

$42+

Million Given to the Community

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$1+

Million Spent with Local Minority Businesses

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44%+

of Cavs Staff are Minorities

Details

100,000+

Children in Cleveland Reached Annually

Details

200

Community Appearances Annually

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15,000

Tickets Donated Annually

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17

Reading & Learning and Learn & Play Centers Opened

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6

Community Legacy Projects Completed

Details

Investment Partnership

There will be no new taxes or increase in existing taxes for The Q Transformation. The public portion of funding will come from revenue streams that already exist and are generated or directly impacted by The Q.

The private-public partnership for the Transformation of The Q is a smart and fair investment for the City of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County.

The Transformation will cost $140 million, with half of the investment funded privately by the Cavs organization and the other half funded through pre-existing, self-generating funds and destination facility sources. Any potential project construction cost increases would be covered privately by the Cavs/Quicken Loans Arena organization.

While the Cavaliers are paying for at least 50% of the Transformation project, the public will continue to own 100% of the arena and property.


  • $70 million in funding paid by the Cavaliers organization by way of increased rent to Gateway and extending the team's lease through 2034.
  • $70 million in bond funding will be paid from pre-existing, self-generating funds and destination facility sources:
    • Admissions Tax: Continuation of the existing portion of 8% of every ticket sold to every event at The Q to the City of Cleveland, which in turn shares that with Cuyahoga County.
    • Sales Tax: The amount generated above the existing level of the 1.25% County sales tax proceeds on all taxable purchases at The Q.
    • County Bed Tax: A portion of the County Bed Tax, which is paid for primarily by visitors from outside Cuyahoga County.
    • County Destination Facility Reserve: Resources dedicated for the Hilton Hotel project that were unused are being re-allocated to The Q, another destination asset.
    • The vast majority of the public source revenue streams used for the Transformation are paid by people living outside Cuyahoga County. In the case of Cavaliers games, it is estimated that over 60 percent of attendees do not reside in Cuyahoga County. That percentage grows to over 70 percent for major concerts like Katy Perry and Billy Joel, and over 90 percent for signature sporting events like the NCAA Tournament and major conventions like the RNC.
    • Sin tax dollars will not be used on the Transformation.

Transforming The Q will cost $140 million and extend the life of the building to 40 years – where the average facility lasts 22 years - also negating the need to build a new arena, which can easily range in cost between $500 and $750+ million.

What About The Sin-Tax?

NBA All-Star Week

The Transformation of The Q will also position Cleveland to host an NBA All-Star Week.

As the NBA’s largest and most important annual gathering of players, fans, business partners and media, NBA All-Star Week has an estimated $100 million self-generating economic impact, which alone covers the proposed portion of public investment into the Transformation, in addition to providing ANOTHER major image-boosting opportunity for our City.

The NBA All-Star Game reaches fans in more than 200 countries and territories in more than 40 languages. Additionally, hundreds of members of the international media converge on the host city to provide firsthand coverage of NBA All-Star events.

The weeklong basketball celebration is one of the most anticipated sporting events of the year and features a full slate of events designed to make the host city the basketball capital of the world.

  • Marquee events include the NBA Rising Stars Challenge and NBA All-Star Celebrity Game on NBA All-Star Friday, NBA All-Star Saturday Night skills competitions, and the NBA All-Star Game on Sunday night. Additionally, fans enjoy the NBA All-Star East/West and Rising Stars team practices and NBA Development League All-Star Game.
  • NBA Center Court, which debuted in Toronto during NBA All-Star Week 2016, celebrates the game of basketball and engages fans of all ages by offering activities, skills competitions and programming on more than 40 courts and baskets. The event also hosts special programming, including the NBA Cares Special Olympics Unified Sports® Basketball Game and Clinic
  • Throughout the week the influx of visitors patronize local businesses, restaurants and bars, in addition to numerous privately hosted parties and hospitality that takes place at various establishments throughout the city.

Finally, as part of NBA All-Star, the NBA works closely with the local community to conduct hands-on service activities designed to leave a lasting, positive impact on underserved populations in the host community.



Read our Frequently Asked Questions

  • Greater Cleveland is moving in a good direction. There is a multi-billion renaissance underway and the City is making great, tangible progress. But we must continue to invest in our key assets to sustain and grow that momentum.
  • The Q is one of Greater Cleveland’s most significant economic drivers. Transforming The Q – which is owned by the public - will keep it competitive and protect the investment the public made when it was built in 1994.
  • The Q is well-used (it is the 33rd busiest arena in the world and 13th busiest domestically), with more than 200 diverse ticketed events, including sporting events, concerts and family shows, and 1,400 private events annually. The Q has been well maintained, but must be kept current and modernized.
  • The Q is the second oldest arena in the NBA based on opening date or significant renovation. The average arena in the NBA lasts just 22 years. The Q is nearly 23 years old (The Richfield Coliseum operated for 20 years). This upgrade is needed to responsibly modernize and transform this key public asset to preserve and enhance our ability to compete for events in the years to come.
  • The Transformation will save hundreds of millions of dollars compared to building a new arena, which can easily range in cost between $500 and $750+ million.

The Q is a huge magnet to downtown Cleveland, with more than 200 diverse ticketed events and 1,400 private events annually that attract 2 million+ patrons. In addition to NBA basketball and professional hockey, the Q also hosts arena football, concerts, family shows and other sporting events. These events have generated huge economic dividends for the City and County.

The Q Has Been Great For the Local Economy in 2016:

  • Generated $245 million in direct spending, which creates and retains jobs
  • Helped create and support 4,800 jobs (influx in jobs includes the RNC)
  • Generated a total of $44 million in tax revenue
    • Generated $15 million in tax revenue for the City of Cleveland.
    • Generated $5 million in tax revenues for Cuyahoga County.

Since The Q's inception in 1994:

  • Generated $2.7 billion in direct spending, which creates and retains jobs
  • Helped support 2,500 jobs per year
  • Generated a total of $500 million in tax revenues
    • Generated $176 million in tax revenues for the City of Cleveland
    • Generated $47 million in tax revenues for Cuyahoga County

The Q has been at the core of stimulating over two decades of continued development, growth and impact in the Gateway neighborhood and downtown Cleveland, including over $1 BILLION in development around the Gateway area alone.

The Q also plays a major role in enhancing the City’s reputation across the country and around the world. The Q was a critical factor in securing the 2016 Republican National Convention. Events like the Republican National Convention and NBA Finals, in addition to their economic impact, present incredible opportunities to showcase Cleveland and are already generating positive dialogue about Cleveland around the globe.

What Are The Challenges The Q Arena Is Facing?

  • Lack of street activation and interaction with neighborhood
  • No pre- or post-event space for visitors
  • Outdoor lines in cold weather
  • Limited public spaces compared to other arenas
  • Narrow concourse with bottleneck conditions during events
  • Wayfinding challenges
  • Lack of gathering spaces/neighborhoods

The proposed Transformation will enhance The Q’s ability to sell event planners on Cleveland. It would:

  • Make the arena’s interior more visible from the outside, making The Q more contemporary, more inviting and more marketable.
  • Create an enhanced, dramatic visual sense of arrival to downtown Cleveland, with Gateway as its front door.
  • Expand The Q’s critical entryways, concourses, "neighborhood" zones and ancillary function space by almost 40% across multiple event levels. This will open up The Q, making outdated and bottle-necked public areas much less constricted.
  • Provide large public gathering places for event attendees prior to events, during breaks and for satellite activities occurring at the same time with main events in the arena bowl.

There will be no new taxes or increase in existing taxes for The Q Transformation. The public portion of funding will come from revenue streams that already exist and are generated or directly impacted by The Q.

The private-public partnership for the Transformation of The Q is a smart and fair investment for the City of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County.

The Transformation will cost $140 million, with half of the investment funded privately by the Cavs organization and the other half funded through pre-existing, self-generating funds and destination facility sources. Any potential project construction cost increases would be covered privately by the Cavs/Quicken Loans Arena organization.

While the Cavaliers are paying for at least 50% of the Transformation project, the public will continue to own 100% of the arena and property.


  • $70 million in funding paid by the Cavaliers organization by way of increased rent to Gateway and extending the team's lease through 2034.
  • $70 million in bond funding will be paid from pre-existing, self-generating funds and destination facility sources:
    • Admissions Tax: Continuation of the existing portion of 8% of every ticket sold to every event at The Q to the City of Cleveland, which in turn shares that with Cuyahoga County.
    • Sales Tax: The amount generated above the existing level of the 1.25% County sales tax proceeds on all taxable purchases at The Q.
    • County Bed Tax: A portion of the County Bed Tax, which is paid for primarily by visitors from outside Cuyahoga County.
    • County Destination Facility Reserve: Resources dedicated for the Hilton Hotel project that were unused are being re-allocated to The Q, another destination asset.
    • Sin tax dollars will not be used on the Transformation.

Transforming The Q will cost $140 million and extend the life of the building to 40 years – where the average facility lasts 22 years - also negating the need to build a new arena, which can easily range in cost between $500 and $750+ million.

  • For context, the first 20 years of that tax started in 1990 and generated funds to build Progressive Field and FirstEnergy Stadium, but not The Q. Instead, it was a portion of admissions taxes to events at The Q and a portion of the County Bed Tax that have paid for construction of The Q. In 2014, voters agreed to extend the sin tax for all three of Cleveland’s major league sports facilities.
  • However, those sin tax funds can only be used for major capital repairs – like a new roof – but are not available to be used for the significant Transformation that is being proposed. Making required repairs and replacing and updating aging mechanical and core facility systems are not enough to keep The Q competitive and in world-class condition.
  • The Transformation plan will modernize the facility in a functionally competitive way that making repairs and updates cannot.
  • Developed by CSL, the preeminent consultant in the convention, sports and leisure space, projections show that the $140 million improvement would result in continued growth in directly related, annual job-producing spending in Cleveland, growing to $328 million PER YEAR BY 2022.
  • The Transformation will save hundreds of millions of dollars compared to building a new arena, which can easily range in cost between $500 and $750+ million.
  • The upgrade will extend the Cavaliers lease through 2034. The average life of an NBA facility is 22 years. The Q today is nearly 23 years old (the Richfield Coliseum operated for 20 years).
  • The Transformation will bolster the arena’s ability to attract additional national and international events, like the Republican National Convention, a future NBA All-Star Week, and more.
  • The NBA has told the Cavaliers that they will bring Cleveland and The Q an All-Star Week in the near term as part of the Transformation plan. In dollars alone, such a week will mean $100 million for local businesses, including hotels, restaurants and retailers.
  • If The Q is not modernized, it will mean a reduced economic impact and a less competitive venue.
  • Projections according to CSL, the preeminent consultant in the convention, sports and leisure space, show that without improvements, directly related job-producing spending in Cleveland would be $100 million less per year on average.
  • As a result of lower spending, tax revenues for the City of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County would be negatively and substantially affected.
  • Large-scale concerts and events will bypass Cleveland and go to other Ohio and Midwestern cities. Cincinnati, for example, was eliminated from consideration for the 2016 RNC because of its outmoded arena.

Quicken Loans Arena is a publicly-owned building. The Cavs are a tenant, but the building is used by many others. The Cavaliers have invested hundreds of millions of dollars in the facility over the years. Regarding public/private partnerships, the team has spent more, in fact, on The Q than any other NBA team has on their respective arena in comparably-sized markets.

Professional sports in the United States have always been a partnership between the teams and the communities they play in and are part of. Around the country, public investment in stadiums and arenas is the norm because the return on investment is evident. In Cleveland, that return on investment has been absolutely great.

The Cavs will pay for half the cost of the Transformation and will invest many millions more in the facility between now and 2034.

The public portion of funding will come from revenue streams that already exist and are generated or directly impacted by The Q.

With respect to The Q and the Cavaliers:

  • Although The Q is owned by the public via Gateway and leased back to the Cavaliers, the Cavs have paid nearly 100% of the costs of maintaining and operating The Q since it opened.
  • Dan Gilbert has personally invested more than $50 million in updates and upgrades to The Q since acquiring the team in 2005.
  • The Cavs have a very "public friendly" lease and have spent more on the arena than any other NBA team in a comparably sized market.
  • Dan Gilbert and the Cavs have been willing to spend and exceed the salary cap deep into the luxury tax with a player payroll at NBA historic levels to put the best possible Cavaliers team on the floor of The Q. This is a reflection of the organizations commitment to continue operating at a championship caliber level.

But beyond that, Dan Gilbert and his Family of Companies believe in, and have heavily invested in, Cleveland. The Rock Ventures Family of Companies have invested more than $1.5 billion in downtown Cleveland and Cuyahoga County. There are now 12 companies here that employ more than 4,500, and they have donated millions of dollars for key civic projects like the Public Square renovation. The Cavaliers organization has given back more than $42 million to the community through charitable donations, scholarships and various education initiatives.