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Skanska-Hunt Chosen as KeyArena Renovation Contractor

KeyArena renovation Oak View Group

Oak View Group has announced the general contractor for an upcoming renovation of Seattle’s KeyArena, naming Skanska-Hunt Construction Group to the position. 

Plans are taking shape for the upcoming KeyArena renovation, a $700 million overhaul that will raise the venue to modern NBA and NHL standards. Oak View Group is aiming to begin construction later this year, and is continuing with the planning process for the project.

In the firm’s latest move, it has announced the selection of Shanska-Hunt as general contractor. Shanska-Hunt, a joint venture between Skanska and AECOM Hunt, will now be tasked with overseeing an elaborate project that is currently projected for a 2020 completion. More from Seattle PI:

A joint venture between Skanska and AECOM Hunt — Skanska-Hunt Construction Group — will oversee a project that officials called “complicated” and “expensive,” and that will utilize new excavation techniques to minimize the impact to the surrounding neighborhood, said Tim Leiweke, CEO of Oak View Group, the firm behind the renovation and plans for an NHL team aimed at the 2020 season.

“Everything that you see from the outside of the building never changes, but it’s a complete reconstruction of everything underneath,” said Tim Romani, CEO of CAA ICON, the firm that is managing the project.

Two major parts of that reconstruction include reorienting the hockey rink so it’s in line with the basketball court, instead of the necessary offset arrangement now used in the arena.

To accomplish that, the contractors will dig down another 15 feet and expand the space below ground all the way out to the inner edge of the outside perimeter — where the massive roof supports hit the ground now. Once it’s complete, people will enter the arena on the upper concourse and have to go down to get to lower levels, Romani said.

The renovation is a major step in Seattle’s push to land franchises in both the NBA and NHL. With an expansion effort already underway, the NHL is viewed as the more imminent possibility. An NHL team could begin play at a renovated KeyArena starting in the 2020-21 season if the expansion bid is approved and the renovation proceeds as planned.

There are several key steps remaining in the planning for the renovation, including an environmental review that is due August 30 and September votes from the city council on development, lease, and integration agreements. If the process moves forward, Oak View Group could begin construction later this year and re-open the renovated arena in 2020.

Rendering courtesy Oak View Group.

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