PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) – The home of our Phoenix Suns, Phoenix Mercury, and Arizona Rattlers is getting a new name – Footprint Center. Arizona’s Family sports reporter Mark McClune tweeted about the announcement by Suns Managing Partner Robert Sarver Friday morning.
While the Suns Arena has been affectionately known as The Purple Palace since it opened, the venue has undergone a few name changes over the years. The most recent naming rights deal with Talking Stick Resort Arena expired in November.
- America West Arena (August 1990-2006)
- US Airways Arena (2006-2015)
- Talking Stick Resort Arena (September 2015-July 2021)
- Footprint Center (Current)
Footprint is a material science company focused on the environment. “Our goal is to make a difference with our plant-based fiber solutions, that don’t harm you or the planet,” its website says. Footprint specializes in "creating a healthier planet by reducing dependency on single- and short-term use plastics," according to PhoenixSunsArena.com. The company wants to make the venue "a carbon-neutral, plastic-free arena," starting with its food and beverage solutions.
“We have a unique opportunity with the Suns, Mercury and Real Mallorca to transform sports and entertainment experiences where fans can enjoy their food and drinks in sustainable packaging and learn more about how they can make changes in their daily lives to get rid of single-use plastics,” Footprint CEO Troy Swope said in a news release. “Together we’ll create a living innovation lab of new ideas for consumer feedback, new opportunities for our customers, and we can educate fans in a way that will create a ripple effect outside the arena. Today is just the beginning.”
Earlier this year, Footprint launched Pledge 2050, urging people all over the world to "quit single-use plastic." Everyone who goes to Footprint Center will be encouraged to sign on. "Starting in single venues can be a gateway for others to understand how to make the switch from plastic to compostable and recyclable solutions," the company said.
“Taking this step will position the Valley at the forefront of the sustainability movement," Said Dan Costello, the chief revenue officer for the Suns and Mercury. "A local effort to eliminate plastic and become carbon-neutral will set a standard for innovation that can spread through the city and scale throughout the sports and entertainment industry."