New performance venue near Las Vegas Strip to reshape skyline
Madison Square Garden’s planned Las Vegas performance venue will offer sound and visual technology never before heard or seen and will change the Strip skyline with a sphere-shaped building 360 feet tall. Construction on the MSG Sphere Las Vegas, which will be built just east of The Venetian, is scheduled to begin in the second half of 2018. A late 2020 opening is planned. The scalable 18,000-seat arena is being built specifically for music and entertainment performances, although it also could host esports competitions and possibly boxing and mixed martial arts.
The Madison Square Garden Co. is partnering with Las Vegas Sands Corp. on the project. The MSG Sphere concept was unveiled Thursday to about 170 entertainment executives at Radio City Music Hall. Las Vegas will be the first Sphere location, but plans are in the works for a venue in London.
The companies did not disclose the cost of the project or how the financing would be split. The 400,000-square-foot facility will be built on an open-air storage lot at Sands Avenue between Koval Lane and Manhattan Street.
Sands executives have said the site is perfectly situated, with thousands of hotel rooms at The Venetian and Palazzo as well as the nearby Wynn Las Vegas and Encore. The Venetian and Palazzo will be connected to the venue via the upstairs lobby of the Sands Expo & Convention Center, through a bridge across Koval, giving guests of those hotels easy access to performances, as well as the company’s other restaurant and club amenities.
That connection also would allow the company to use the performance venue as a general conference center for trade shows and conventions scheduled at the Sands Expo.
How and where the bridge will connect is unclear. Wynn Resorts owns a strip of land with an employee parking garage directly across Koval from the Sands Expo. The Las Vegas Monorail line also straddles Koval and Sands there.
At 360 feet, the MSG Sphere Las Vegas won’t be as tall as the Palazzo (642 feet) or the High Roller attraction (550 feet) a few blocks away, but the diameter of the venue at its widest point will be more than 500 feet.