Now that a 10-year lease extension with hockey’s Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (AHL) is final, plans for Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza upgrades are being revealed.
The Penguins had played the 2018-19 AHL season at the facility under a lease agreement that expired on June 30. After much discussion, the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins–owner of the AHL’s Penguins–and the Luzerne County Convention Center Authority (LCCCA) announced on Monday that they had an agreement in principal on a 10-year lease extension.
As was expected, the agreement received final approval from the LCCCA on Wednesday. When the final agreement was announced, it was revealed that Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza is set for several upgrades, including renovations that will affect the fan and player experiences. More from The Citizens’ Voice:
Terms of the deal include a number of planned upgrades to the arena, which opened in 1999. The team will commit several hundred thousand dollars for extensive renovations to the locker rooms, and the authority has committed to spend more than $900,000 over the first two years of the contract, LCCCA Board Chairman Gary Zingaretti said. New features will include an LED ribbon board — which can display advertisements, stats and other graphics for all arena events — and a new LED lighting system that will improve the viewing experience for fans at the game and watching online.
The new contract, unanimously approved by the LCCCA at its monthly meeting Wednesday runs July 1 through June 30, 2029, keeping the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at the Wilkes-Barre Twp. facility.
“What we’ve agreed upon is a contract that both parties are happy with,” Zingaretti said. “One that treats the Penguins as our partner, not just our tenant. We will be working closely together on advertising, sales and capital projects in the building. Instead of both parties supplying the same services, we will split responsibilities and share the proceeds. It will truly be a cooperative approach.”
The authority is committing an additional $1 million for improvements that, contractually, must be made by the end of the fifth season. Proposed ideas include a new team store and lounge.
The Penguins have played at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza since its 1999 opening.
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