PNC Arena
PNC Arena Raleigh.JPG
South Entrance in 2013
Location Raleigh, North Carolina
Coordinates <span class="geo-dms" title="Maps, aerial photos, and other data for Template:Coord/dec2dms/dExpression error: Unexpected >= operator. Template:Coord/dec2dms/dExpression error: Unexpected >= operator.">Template:Coord/dec2dms/dExpression error: Unexpected >= operator. Template:Coord/dec2dms/dExpression error: Unexpected >= operator. / ,
Broke ground July 22, 1997
Opened October 29, 1999
Renovated 2003, 2008–09, 2016, 2018-19
Owner Centennial Authority
Operator Gale Force Sports & Entertainment
Surface Multi-surface
Construction cost $158 million
($208 million in 2018, adjusted for inflation.[1])
Architect Odell Associates, Inc.
Project Manager McDevitt Street Bovis, Inc.[2]
Structural engineer Geiger Engineers[3]
General Contractor Hensel Phelps Construction Co.[2]
Former names Raleigh Entertainment & Sports Arena (1999–2002)
RBC Center (2002–2012)
Tenants Carolina Hurricanes (NHL) (1999–present)
NC State Wolfpack (ACC) (1999–present)
Carolina Cobras (AFL) (2000–2002)
Capacity Basketball: 19,722+[2]
Ice hockey: 18,176 (1999-2011) 18,680+[2]
Concerts: 19,500+(varies on setup)
Field dimensions 700,000 square feet (65,000 m2)

PNC Arena[4] (originally Raleigh Entertainment & Sports Arena and formerly the RBC Center) is an indoor arena located in Raleigh, North Carolina. The arena seats 19,722 for basketball [2] and 18,680 for ice hockey,[2] including 59 suites, 13 loge boxes and 2,000 club seats. The building has three concourses and a 300-seat restaurant.

PNC Arena is home to the Carolina Hurricanes of the National Hockey League and the NC State Wolfpack men's basketball team of NCAA Division I. The arena neighbors Carter–Finley Stadium, home of Wolfpack Football; the North Carolina State Fairgrounds and Dorton Arena (on the Fairgrounds). The arena also hosted the Carolina Cobras of the Arena Football League from 2000 to 2002 and is the fourth-largest arena in the ACC (after the Carrier Dome, KFC Yum! Center and the Dean Smith Center). It's also the eighth-largest arena in the NCAA.


The idea of a new basketball arena to replace the Wolfpack's longtime home, Reynolds Coliseum, first emerged in the 1980s under the vision of then-Wolfpack coach Jim Valvano. In 1989, the NCSU Trustees approved plans to build a 23,000 seat arena. The Centennial Authority was created by the North Carolina General Assembly in 1995 as the governing entity of the arena, then financed by state appropriation, local contributions, and University fundraising. The Centennial Authority refocused the project into a multi-use arena, leading to the 1997 relocation agreement of the then-Hartford Whalers, who would become the Carolina Hurricanes. Construction began that year and was completed in 1999 with an estimated cost of $158 million, which was largely publicly financed by a Hotel and Restaurant tax. The Hurricanes agreed to pay $60 million of the cost, and the state of North Carolina paid $18 million. As part of the deal, the Hurricanes assumed operational control of the arena.

Known as the Raleigh Entertainment and Sports Arena (or ESA) from 1999 to 2002, it was renamed the RBC Center after an extended search for a corporate sponsor. RBC Bank, the US division of the Royal Bank of Canada, acquired 20-year naming rights for a reported $80 million. On June 19, 2011, it was announced that PNC Financial Services bought US assets of RBC Bank and acquired the naming rights to the arena pending approval by the regulatory agencies.[5] On December 15, 2011, the Centennial Authority, the landlord of the arena, approved a name change for the facility to PNC Arena.[6] The name change officially took place on March 15, 2012.[7] On a normal hockey day, PNC Arena has more than 400 people on duty for security and concessions.


Raleigh experienced its first NHL game on October 29, 1999, when the Hurricanes hosted the New Jersey Devils on the building's opening night. The first playoff series at the Entertainment and Sports Arena were held in 2001 when the hurricanes hosted the Devils in games 3, 4, and 6, of the 2001 Stanley Cup Playoffs, but the Hurricanes lost in 6. the ESA (By then the renamed RBC center) hosted games of both the 2002 Stanley Cup Playoffs and Finals; however, the Hurricanes lost in the final. On June 19, 2006, the Hurricanes were on home ice for a decisive game seven of the Stanley Cup Final, defeating the Edmonton Oilers 3–1 to bring the franchise its first Stanley Cup and North Carolina its first and only major professional sports championship. The arena hosted the playoffs again in 2009, with the Hurricanes losing in the Eastern Conference Finals.[8] In 2019, the arena hosted playoff hockey for the first time in 10 years, with fans setting a single-game record attendance of 19,495 in game 4 of the second round vs the Islanders.[9]

The arena has also seen use in fictional media, as a season four episode of The CW series One Tree Hill saw the Tree Hill High School Ravens playing a NCHSAA championship game in the venue.

Top 10 attended Hurricanes games at PNC Arena

Attendance numbers come from Press numbers from ESPN, the PNC Arena, the Raleigh News and Observer, as well as Hockey Italics represent playoff games.

Date Opponent Result Attendance Rank
May 3, 2019 New York Islanders W (5–2) 19,495 1 [10]
April 18, 2019 Washington Capitals W (2–1) 19,202 2 [11]
May 2, 2019 New York Islanders W (5–2) 19,066 3 [12]
June 8, 2002 Detroit Red Wings OTL (2–3) 18,982 4 [13]
June 19, 2006 Edmonton Oilers W (3–1) 18,978 5 [14]
April 22, 2019 Washington Capitals W (5–2) 18,913 6 [15]
May 8, 2009 Boston Bruins W (4–1) 18,878 7 [16]
May 23, 2009 Pittsburgh Penguins L (2–6) 18,789 8 [17]
April 15, 2019 Washington Capitals W (5–0) 18,783 9 [18]
May 14, 2019 Boston Bruins L (1–2) 18,768 10 [19]


A ribbon board was installed in 2003 which encircles the arena bowl.[20] In 2008, the arena renovated its sound system. Clair Brothers Systems installed a combination of JBL line arrays to provide improved audio coverage for all events. In June 2009, video crews installed a new Daktronics HD scoreboard for about $2 Million. It replaced the ten-year-old scoreboard that had been in the arena since its opening in 1999. The scoreboard is full LED and four-sided with full video displays, whereas the old scoreboard was eight-sided; four of those sides featured alternating static dot-matrix displays (very much outdated for today's standards). In addition, the scoreboard features an octagonal top section with full video capability, along with two rings above and below the main video screens; they are similar to the ribbon board encircling the arena.

In October 2015, architects met with the Centennial Authority to discuss a potential renovation which includes all-new entrances, a new rooftop restaurant and bar, covered tailgating sections, and moving the administrative offices elsewhere in the arena as a result. Project costs have not yet been decided, as the architects were given until May/June 2016 to come up with estimates. The estimated cost could be almost $200 million. The Centennial Authority would have to approve the estimates before official voting on the project could begin. If the funds are approved the renovation start time should be 2020 and the renovation could be completed in 2022 at the earliest. The plans call for new office spaces, additional meeting spaces, removing stairwells, removing aisles, adding wider seats, perhaps building lounges on the mezzanine levels below the main concourse level -- there are a number of wide-ranging proposals in the project, there is a possibility that not all will eventually be approved or built. [21][22]

During the summer of 2016, the ribbon boards were upgraded and a second ribbon board was added to the upper level fascia. Static advertising signs inside the lower bowl of the arena were replaced with LED video boards. In 2018, the arena repaired majority the roof/structural issues in order for a new videoboard that will come in 2019 as well as an ice/court projection system that was first used on December 23 at a Hurricanes game against the Boston Bruins.

PNC Arena will receive a new Daktronics video board in 2019. The board will be nearly 3 times as large as the current video board. This new video board will feature a full 360 degree display, two underbelly screens and 2 underbelly static advertising signs. The new video board will be the first of its kind and one of the first few 360 degree video boards currently in the NHL. The video board cost $4.7 million, will stretch blue line to blue line, and will be 4000 square feet. The original plans called for a 2018 installation, but the project was bumped back due to structural/roof issues that needed to be solved before a new video board could be placed. The PNC Arena’s current video board is outdated compared to others as 2 very similar ones will be taken down and 1 very similar was taken down last season. The PNC Arena video board was taken down on June 1, 2019 and the last day in operation in the PNC Arena was on May 31, 2019 for a Special Olympics event.[23][24]

File:RBC Center Concourse.JPG

One of the main concourses inside the RBC Center during a Hurricanes game in 2009.

Notable events

In addition to hockey and college basketball, PNC Arena hosts a wide array of concerts, family shows, and other events each year. Past performers include Prince, Bruce Springsteen, Cher, Eric Clapton, Taylor Swift, Billy Joel, Justin Timberlake, Big Time Rush, Elton John, Lady Gaga, One Direction, Celine Dion, George Strait, Bon Jovi, Journey, Def Leppard, Keith Urban, and many other artists. Family shows have included Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus, Sesame Street Live, Disney On Ice, and the Harlem Globetrotters. The arena has also hosted several college hockey games between NC State and North Carolina.

PNC Arena hosted the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) men's basketball tournament from 1999 to 2008.

When known as the RBC Center, it hosted the 2005 Jeopardy College Championship with Peter Ellis representing North Carolina State University.

The arena was a site for Rounds 1 and 2 of the 2004, 2008, 2014, and 2016 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament, respectively.

File:RBC Center.jpg

An NC State college basketball game at the RBC Center in 2008.

The arena set a single-event attendance record of 20,052 fans on January 28, 2019, for Metallica's WorldWired Tour.[25]

The arena also set a new hockey game attendance record of 19,495 fans in game 4 of the 2019 NHL Playoffs vs the New York Islanders on May 3, 2019. (Hurricanes won 5-2 to make it to the ECF)

List of concerts and other events

See also


  1. Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–2008. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved December 7, 2010.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 "PNC Arena: Info". Centennial Authority. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  3. "PNC Arena". Geiger Engineers. Archived from the original on December 20, 2010. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  4. Shaffer, Josh (March 16, 2012). "RBC Center Out; PNC Arena In". The News & Observer (Raleigh: The McClatchy Company). Archived from the original on April 30, 2012. Retrieved April 30, 2012.
  5. Ranii, David (June 20, 2011). "Goodbye RBC Center". The News & Observer (Raleigh: The McClatchy Company). Archived from the original on February 22, 2014. Retrieved May 26, 2012.
  6. deBruyn, Jason (January 25, 2012). "RBC Signs Coming Down at RBC Center". Triangle Business Journal. Retrieved January 26, 2012.
  7. "Hurricanes and PNC Bank to Introduce PNC Arena to Community on March 15" (Press release). Centennial Authority. February 23, 2012. Retrieved January 13, 2013.
  23. Decock, Luke. "After scoreboard fiasco, honeymoon is over for new Hurricanes owner". News & Observer. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
  24. "Canes reveal digital rendering of new video board coming to PNC Arena". News & Observer. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
  25. Matthews, Natalie. "Metallica sets new attendance record at PNC Arena". WRAL. Retrieved 30 January 2019.


  • NCSU Athletics. RBC Center Retrieved July 12, 2004 from [1].
  • RBC Center: History. Retrieved July 12, 2004 from [2].
  • The Hockey News. 59.37 (2006): 6.
  • Live Sound: Clair Systems Revamps RBC Center Audio with JBL Loudspeakers. Retrieved May 15, 2009 from [3]
  • RBC Center Gets New Scoreboard. Retrieved June 7, 2009 from [4]

External links

Events and tenants
Preceded by
Greensboro Coliseum
Home of the
Carolina Hurricanes

1999 – present
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Reynolds Coliseum
Home of the
NC State Wolfpack

Succeeded by
Preceded by
Home of the
Carolina Cobras

Succeeded by
Charlotte Coliseum
Preceded by
Petersen Events Center
Host of the
Jeopardy! College Championship

Succeeded by
Galen Center
Preceded by
Bell Centre
Host of the
NHL All-Star Game

Succeeded by
Scotiabank Place

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