Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson recently announced a detailed plan to demolish the Mobile Civic Center and build a new $300 million arena in its place.

Stimpson said the new facility would be a world-class entertainment venue unrivaled along the Gulf Coast.

“Mobilians have been talking about how to address our aging Civic Center for nearly two decades, and we are beyond excited to put this feasible and affordable plan into action," said Stimpson. “We have partnered with the best in the entertainment industry to help design and operate the most technologically advanced arena in the region. It will have the versatility to host all kinds of events and attractions and meet the unique needs of our community. This is a game changer for Mobile.”

Mobile Chamber of Commerce president and CEO Bradley Byrne said multiple proposals were evaluated for the 16.5 acres but rebuilding a multi-phase development was the most cost-effective, over renovations. Renovations were estimated to cost $250 million.

The lifespan of a renovation would be 15 years, but a new building will have a lifespan of 50 years.

“There will be nothing like it in the United States of America,” Byrne said.

James Barber explained the city will borrow as little as possible to finance the project. Out of the $300 million, around $160 million is expected to be bonded. A firm has been hired to gather sponsorships.

Populous, a global design firm, has been working on the plans for two years. The goal was to design the outside of the building with a Mobile flare, keeping with the French-style façade.

Eventually, the area surrounding the arena will include a theater, a mixed-use facility, some residential development and a hotel.

Future plans Alabama News

"This is going to be an economic engine for us like we've never seen before," said Councilman William Carroll.

Inside the facility will be a grand hall, ballrooms and an arena for concerts, sporting events and Mardi Gras activities. It will hold a maximum capacity of over 10,000.

Civic Center Arena Alabama News

Some of the events may include major acts in concert and comedy, professional hockey and other sports and family shows, such as figure skating and circuses.

The new facility is expected to bring in 400,000 new visitors a year.

The existing civic center is 60 years old. Demolition is expected to happen in August. Groundbreaking of the new facility is tentatively scheduled for February 2025.

The estimated competition of the project would be sometime in 2027.

To connect with the author of this story or to comment, email

Don’t miss out! Subscribe to our newsletter and get our top stories every weekday morning.