When the Cleveland Cavaliers 2020-21 regular season begins at home on December 23rd versus the Charlotte Hornets there will be a number of procedures, protocols and technologies in place designed to keep the very limited number of fans in attendance healthy, safe and comfortable to enjoy their gameday experience at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
Over the past several months, the Cavaliers in collaboration with the NBA have worked closely with the Cleveland Clinic, the City of Cleveland, the State of Ohio, as well as industry leading venue consultants and partners to devise a comprehensive return-to-venue plan that prioritizes health and safety. This plan currently includes a state-restricted, reduced seating limit of 300 fans per game. The limited amount of tickets for each home game will be made available to family and associates of players and coaches. Within the initial 300-fan limit, there will also be a small inventory for members of Wine & Gold United (the team’s official season ticket-based year-round membership club), as well as other team partners to begin the season. The Cavaliers and Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse continue to work closely with state and local officials and others regarding the timing and conditions that will warrant any appropriate expansion of these conditions for fan access and capacity.
For the two home preseason games slated for December 12th and 14th vs. the Indiana Pacers, there will be no fan access at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. This will be done in order to take every initial precaution related to health and operational protocols and processes and in relation to the current health and safety advisories that run through December 17th. The Cavaliers will be communicating directly with Wine & Gold United members and partners in the coming days regarding their ability to attend home games during the first half of the season.
The Cavaliers return-to-venue plan comes following the facility receiving third-party certification and rating by both the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC) and the WELL Building Institute (IWBI) for its proactive and progressive initiatives to help protect the health and safety of all those who visit. Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse is the first sports and entertainment venue in the state of Ohio, and was one of the first in the nation, to achieve these industry-leading certifications and ratings. The plan has also been thoroughly reviewed and endorsed by the Cleveland Clinic.
“We are thrilled to have Cavaliers basketball back inside Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse and look forward to treating any fans and guests in attendance to an exceptional home game experience in a safe, healthy and comfortable environment,” said Cavaliers and Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse CEO Len Komoroski. “We have the utmost confidence in our deep level of preparation and the health and safety measures in place, which have been reviewed by local health authorities, certified by leading venue consultants, and endorsed by the Cleveland Clinic. While this remains a journey, it is an important starting point for us with very limited fan access. At the same time, we hope access can grow over the course of the season as the associated health and safety landscape evolves and improves.”
In addition to a reduced attendance limit and appropriate social distancing measures, health and safety protocols include required face masks; contactless mobile ticketing and cashless purchases; thorough cleaning and disinfecting procedures throughout the venue and much more.
Reopening health and safety measures include:
- HVAC Technology: Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse is equipped with the latest in HVAC technology, including air handling units that feature AtmosAir, a bipolar ionization process that assists with the clean air process. In a top lab study, Microchem Laboratory found the system was proven to neutralize coronavirus by 99.92%. This technology is the most effective system for cleaning and decontaminating indoor air and surfaces.
- Pre-Arrival Symptom Self-Screening: COVID-19 symptom self-screening must be completed by all fans prior to their arrival to Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
- Fan Ingress and Egress: Each ticket will provide a required entrance and exit zone (i.e. Sherwin-Williams Entrance, Cleveland-Cliffs Entrance, Discount Drug Mart Entrance, etc.), as well as a targeted entry time to stagger arrival and avoid crowding. With plenty of new outdoor signage around the exterior of the FieldHouse, designated entrance zones will be easy to locate.
- Contactless Mobile Ticketing: Fans will have the ability to hover their cell phone above a terminal to scan their ticket and gain access to the venue in a completely contactless capacity. Mobile tickets for Cavaliers games will be seamlessly accessed via the SeatGeek app.
- Cashless Purchases: Cash will not be accepted as a form of payment at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse this upcoming season. All purchases must be made with a valid debit or credit card, or mobile wallet options like Apple Pay or Google Pay. Guest services will have VISA gift cards available in different denominations for fans with cash to exchange their money.
- In-Bowl Seating Arrangements: Seating will be comprised of “pods” to allow for six feet or more of social distancing between groups.
- Facial Coverings: Face masks will be required upon entry for all attendees (ages 2 and over) and should be worn at all times, unless actively eating or drinking in a designated area. If a guest does not bring or has lost a mask, a replacement will be provided at no cost.
- FieldHouse Neighborhoods: Neighborhoods will feature designated eating areas with dedicated sanitization personnel cleaning and monitoring to ensure appropriate social distancing.
- Hand Sanitizer: Hand sanitizer and hand washing stations will be abundantly located throughout the FieldHouse.
- Concourse Safety Signage: An abundance of concourse safety signage, including over 700 digital concourse signage displays will be programmed for communication and education related to wayfinding, social distancing and general guest information.
- Restrooms: Additional staff will be dedicated to restrooms and other high-traffic areas. Hands free faucets, paper towel dispensers and toilets will be installed in all restrooms.
- Plexiglass Screens: Plexiglass barriers will be installed at all concession and merchandise stands to reduce contact between fans and staff.
- Cleaning and Sanitizations: Cleaning and sanitization processes and procedures exceed Centers for Disease Control (CDC) standards. Electrostatic sprayers will be used to evenly disperse disinfectants across surfaces more efficiently. Portal UV lighting units will also be utilized.
- Event Staff: All Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse staff has undergone additional health and safety training, will be subject to temperature checks and will wear appropriate PPE during games and events.
Additional information regarding ticketing, as well as protocols and procedures will be sent directly to attendees of each home game. All Cavalier games this upcoming season will be broadcast on WTAM 1100 AM and WMMS 100.7 FM radio, as well as WNZN 89.1 FM Spanish radio, and FOX Sports Ohio TV.