In Chicago, the Surge esports arena is planned to open. The USD 30 million arena, dedicated to esports and virtual reality (VR) will create an immersive experience for up to 1,400 guests which are expected to include gaming participants and spectators.
The arena is expected to cover more than 108,000 sq ft and will include free-roaming space, dedicated to VR gamers and F&B options. The developers hope to begin construction by this summer, with plans to open doors to the public by summer 2022.
Smash Interactive plans to build the Surge esports arena. Ticketed esports events at the arena would happen primarily during the evenings and weekends, but the space would also be available to members of the public looking to hold an event with a virtual reality component.
In Tampa, Florida, NFL stars Steve Young and Jerry Rice are working with a nonprofit, the Skills Center, to build an esports arena called 8 to 80 Zone.
The facility will be funded through Young and Rice’s Forever Young Foundation. It will be a free resource for youth living in underserved communities. The arena is expected to open later in 2021.
Steve and Jerry believe that parents of youth who are passionate about gaming should take time to understand the learning potential and opportunities that esports brings. Gaming, and the competitive esports world, provides a stepping stone into coding, publishing, and mass media art, and this is something parents should embrace.