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Concert Venues :: Buffalo Memorial Auditorium

Stats


Now Known As
Date Opened Oct. 14, 1940
Demolished
Venue Capacity 15,280
Venue URL
Venue Address 140 Main Street
Buffalo, NY 14224



Venue Information


Construction on the Buffalo Memorial Auditorium began on November 30, 1939 and a grand opening celebration was held on October 14, 1940. Built for $2,700,000 the Aud was a WPA project. The arena originally sat 12,280 for ice hockey, with an additional 2,000-3,000 sitting in the floor area for basketball and other events. In addition to sporting events the Aud also hosted concerts by major acts such as The Grateful Dead who performed there twice. Circuses, dog shows and political events all took place at the Aud.

An $8.7 million renovation took place after the 1970-71 inauguration of the Sabres and Braves franchises. The roof of the old arena was slowly raised, making room for a new upper level. (orange level). This raised the total capacity of the arena to about 18,000 for basketball and 16,433 for hockey.

In the years since its closing, the building has remained closed to the public although Buffalo's Studio Arena Theatre was at times allowed to use the large floor surface to paint backgrounds for its productions. During the 2001-02 season, Sabres officials and the city of Buffalo entered the building to relocate some items from the main concourse of the Aud to HSBC Arena, including a sign for the "Old Aud's Pub" which was re-incarnated by popular demand. During a Versus television broadcast from HSBC Arena during the 2006 Stanley Cup Playoffs, the inside of the Aud was shown and the video showed that the seating bowl and arena floor have remained virtually untouched. Most notably, the advertisements that were on the boards during the final Sabres home game in 1996 were still present and the scoreboard hanging above center ice remained in the rafters.

For the last few years plans were in the works to renovate the Aud and re-purpose it as a Bass Pro Shops store, however on March 29, 2007 these plans were officially abandoned. Instead it was announced that Bass Pro will build a new building on the Buffalo waterfront near the old Aud. The Aud is now planned for demolition. Although there is no scheduled date for the demolition, it is expected to cost 10 million dollars and be done by early 2009.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buffalo_Memorial_Auditorium



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