Inside the Venue: Bradley Center

By Brian Knapp Aug 12, 2011
A quick look inside the Bradley Center ...

Location: Milwaukee
Opened: October 1988
Cost: $90 million
Seating Capacity: 20,000
Architect: Populous

The Bradley Center on Sunday will host its first Ultimate Fighting Championship event, as UFC Live 5 “Hardy vs. Lytle lands in Milwaukee. The show -- which airs on the Versus network at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT -- will feature a welterweight tilt between former title contender Dan Hardy and “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 4 finalist Chris Lytle. Hardy, 29, will enter the cage on a three-fight losing streak, his roster spot in the UFC perhaps on the line.

The remainder of the main card showcases a pivotal lightweight co-headliner pitting the world-ranked Jim Miller against former WEC champion Benson Henderson, a welterweight clash pairing Duane Ludwig with “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 7 winner Amir Sadollah and a 155-pound duel matching Donald Cerrone against Brazilian prospect Charles Oliveira. The eight remaining dark matches, including a showdown between WEC imports Joseph Benavidez and Eddie Wineland, will stream on the UFC’s Facebook page.

According to its website, the Bradley Center is the only major, public assembly facility in North America with construction underwritten through the philanthropy of a single family. At a cost of $90 million, it was built through the donation of the late Jane Bradley Pettit, in memory of her father, Harry Lynde Bradley. He was the co-founder and chairman of the Allen-Bradley Company. Fans can reach the facility’s three concourses via 16 escalators and two elevators. There are 12 permanent concession stands on site, along with four merchandise kiosks and 24 public restrooms. In the summer of 2010, the Bradley Center replaced its outdated scoreboard with a new 3.5-million pixel LED unit, which includes a particularly unique feature: its bottom panel also has an LED screen, allowing for images to be displayed above the floor itself.

Home to the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks and the Marquette University men’s basketball team since it opened in 1988, the Bradley Center is no stranger to major sporting events. The arena has hosted the NCAA Frozen Four on three different occasions -- 1993, 1997 and 2006.

Professional Bull Riders (Sept. 9-10), Keith Urban (Sept. 13), Women of Faith (Sept. 30-Oct. 1), Sesame Street Live (Nov. 25-27) and Monster Jam 2012 (Jan. 20-21) will follow the UFC into the Bradley Center.

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