In a deal with the United Center, Uber has opened an indoor lounge near the stadium where riders can find their drivers. Called the Uber Zone, it serves as the ride-hailing service’s designated pick-up and drop-off location for United Center events.
Uber said it is the first permanent structure it has built to serve any sports and entertainment arena.
The facility is in Lot E at the northeast corner of Madison and Wood streets. Asked if it operates on a lease agreement, an Uber spokeswoman said the service is a partnership between the company and the stadium.
The temperature-controlled Uber Zone can accommodate up to 1,000 people and has seating, digital screens and charging stations.
“We are excited to collaborate with Uber and be the first arena to launch a space outside our main gates for our visiting fans to comfortably await their ride after a game or concert,” said Joe Myhra, senior vice president at the United Center.
Fans can book rides through the Uber app. The company said after the event, riders can head to the pick-up site and show the Uber attendant the lane number where their driver is parked. The attendant would direct the riders to the proper vehicle.
The United Center said on its website the Uber Zone will open two hours before events and stay open for an hour after they end.
Niraj Patel, Uber’s director of rider operations, said the service will be a model for others at similar arenas.