The total Climate Pledge Arena cost now exceeds a billion dollars as the scale of work changes for the future home of the Seattle Kraken (NHL).
When Oak View Group (OVG) embarked on this project, COVID-19 was not a thing, and it wasn’t contemplated that the facility could someday host NBA basketball again. But the extreme renovation of the former KeyArena and Seattle Coliseum–really, a completely new arena under a historic roof–now must operate in a COVID world, and with the potential addition of NBA basketball down the line, the scope of the project has changed, according to OVG President Tim Leiweke:
“We have continued to add to the building, and there were also COVID-19-related costs,” Leiweke said. “But a lot of it is things we decided to add and do. There were the things we committed to get the arena deal with the city, then the things we needed to do in order to get the NHL franchise. And then there’s the NBA component so we can be NBA-ready if and when the league ever decides to make a team available.”
Climate Pledge Arena is set to open this fall for the 2021-2022 NHL season. The arena was previously named Washington State Coliseum and the Seattle Center Coliseum. It began life as the Washington State Pavilion for the Century 21 Exposition and Seattle World’s Fair. Designed by Paul Thiry initially as an expo space, the Washington State Pavilion featured a signature hyperbolic roofline—a roofline that survived two renovations, one to convert the facility to an arena and a later expansion to the KeyArena configuration. The 18,100-seat venue is expected to host 200 events each year, including the aforementioned Kraken, three-time WNBA world champion Seattle Storm, live music and entertainment, and City of Seattle community events. You can read more about the arena design here.
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