New TD Garden seating is being reevaluated, as fans have complained about cramped conditions at the Boston Bruins and Boston Celtics home.
TD Garden owner and operator Delaware North announced plans last year for a 50,000 square foot, more than $100 million expansion of the arena. Among the projects that were completed leading up to the 2019-20 NBA and NHL seasons was the installation of new seating, as the venue’s original seats were swapped out in favor new black seats.
Thus far, this change has been met with criticism from fans, with many taking to social media to complain about cramped conditions in the arena’s bowl. TD Garden officials confirmed recently that they will take that feedback into consideration, and will be reevaluating the situation. This does not amount to a commitment to replace the new seating, but TD Garden is an evaluation phase on the issue. More from Boston Magazine:
“For the first time in nearly 25 years, we updated the seating inside TD Garden – always with the goal of improving the fan experience,” a TD Garden spokesperson says in an email. “Through guest feedback, we recognize there are some areas of concern, and have re-engaged our industry seating experts to evaluate and provide assessment.”
Asked if this means the Garden might end up changing its seating, the spokesperson tells me the venue is in the “evaluation phase right now.”…
While the new layout does include about 500 new seats, that doesn’t appear to be the reason people are feeling squeezed. Nearly all the additional capacity comes from new seating in the arena’s eighth and ninth floors, the Garden says, adding that only 20 seats were added to its loge and balcony areas.
Instead, the problem appears to be the seats themselves. “The newly designed seats feature cushioning on bottom and back of ALL seats (previous seats did not all have padding), new armrest design, and increased seat back height and the overall ergonomics may contribute to a smaller seat feel for guests,” the spokesperson says in an email, adding, “We remain open for feedback and will continue to work with fans as we transition through all the changes.”
TD Garden has hosted preseason games for both the Bruins and the Celtics since the new seating was installed. The Bruins play their regular-season home opener tomorrow night.
Image courtesy TD Garden.