People driving along First Avenue in downtown Cedar Rapids will soon see a new name on the city’s convention center and arena — Alliant Energy Power House.
City officials announced the 12-year naming rights agreement at a press conference Friday morning. The agreement, which became effective on July 1, starts at $300,000 per year, with an option to renew for an additional five years.
“This venue is a critical amenity for our community, and one we take a lot of pride in,” City Manager Jeff Pomeranz said during the press conference. “It is a huge economic driver to the downtown district and draws visitors from all over the country.”
The facility first opened in 1979 as the Five Seasons Center. The venue closed in 2012 and underwent a renovation before reopening in 2013, Pomeranz said. It has been known as the U.S. Cellular Center for the last seven years.
The complex has more than 300,000 guests each year attending weddings, conventions, concerts, sports championships and other events, Mayor Brad Hart said.
Jay Anderken, general manager of the adjoining city-owned DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, said the hotel is pleased to be partnering with Alliant Energy. (The DoubleTree will keep its name since it is not part of the naming rights agreement.)
“The value of that contract is just over $4 million for this facility in our community, and it will give us the opportunity to continue to bring top acts in here,” Anderken said.
The naming announcement is “just one example of our ongoing commitment” to supporting Cedar Rapids, said Terry Kouba, Alliant Energy’s senior vice president of utility operations.
“2020 has been a very challenging year in many, many ways, and as we finish out the year and look forward to the future, Alliant Energy remains committed to this community,” Kouba said. “… The Alliant Energy Power House allows us to connect with our customers and further growth and development in this wonderful community and the surrounding area for many years to come.”