KeyArena renovation breaks ground following NHL announcement

Dec 5, 2018, 2:52 PM | Updated: Dec 6, 2018, 6:49 am
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan was at the KeyArena groundbreaking on Wednesday afternoon. (KIRO 7)
(KIRO 7)

A day after the NHL Board of Governors officially announced its plans to bring a hockey team to Seattle in 2021, KeyArena is commencing its large-scale rebuild to accommodate that team.

RELATED: An NHL Primer for Seattle hockey fans

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, Governor Jay Inslee, and NHL executives attended the ground-breaking ceremony for KeyArena’s remodel on Wednesday. Renovations were originally put on hold while the city awaited the NHL’s vote. Now that the Board of Governors has voted unanimously to bring an NHL team to Seattle, the ball is officially rolling for the Key’s overhaul.

“I have to say that this is a family victory for the state of Washington and Seattle — this building is intertwined with our family history,” said Governor Inslee at the ground-breaking.

“We’re breaking ground on the next generation of the Seattle Center,” said Mayor Durkan. “When this is done, it will be the best arena anywhere.”

“It’s been over 100 years since we had the Stanley Cup and it’s time to bring it home,” she added.

In total, the renovations will cost upwards of $800 million of private money, $200 million more than was originally expected after additional project upgrades were accounted for. The rebuild will leave the iconic exterior design of the Key untouched, while the bulk of the construction will encompass a complete reconstruction of virtually everything inside.

“Yes it takes more money to make the arena perfect — it will be perfect, it will be privatized, and it will be ready to host the NBA when they’re ready for us,” said Tim Leiweke, executive director of the Oak View Group.

The rebuild will include a 360-foot-long glass atrium, dedicated locker rooms for Seattle’s new NHL team, a potential NBA team, and the defending WNBA champion Seattle Storm, 50,000 square feet of storage, and a 750,000 square foot interior. Capacity for hockey games will sit up around 17,400 people, while basketball will house 18,600.

Meanwhile, construction will soon go forward as planned in Northgate for a 180,000 square foot NHL practice facility, equipped with three regulation ice rinks, locker rooms, offices for NHL operations and staff, a restaurant and bar, retail space, and more.

All in all, it’s safe to say that hockey will soon be arriving in Seattle full-bore, as appropriate facilities for an NHL team begin to take shape across the city.

Local News

Climate Pledge Arena...
Associated Press

Climate Pledge Arena ready to get Kraken for hockey debut

The first event ever inside Climate Pledge Arena — whether it will be considered the official first event or not — was far from a soft opening.
1 day ago
shipping containers...
KIRO 7 News Staff

Approximately 40 shipping containers adrift off Washington coast

Approximately 40 shipping containers were lost off a ship 43 miles west of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, according to the United States Coast Guard.
1 day ago
Kathryn Altena

Gov. Inslee, Washington groups prepare to welcome Afghan refugees

In the coming months, 1,400 Afghan refugees are expected to pass through the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport upon their arrival in Washington.
1 day ago
King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski...
Nick Bowman

King County Councilmember accused of history of ‘verbally abusive’ behavior toward female staff

King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski is facing accusations detailing a history of verbally abusive behavior toward female staff members.
1 day ago
Microsoft campus, vaccine...
KIRO 7 News Staff

Racial harassment allegations at Microsoft campus construction site in Redmond

Racial harassment on the job — that’s what a Black construction employee says he was dealing with for months at the build site on Microsoft’s campus in Redmond.
1 day ago
Jaime Herrera Beutler...
Nick Bowman

Washington Rep. Herrera Beutler breaks from GOP party line again over Bannon contempt vote

Washington Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler was among nine Republicans who voted in favor of holding Steve Bannon in contempt on Thursday.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles


Medicare open enrollment for 2022 starts Oct. 15 and SHIBA can help!

Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner SPONSORED — Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, also called the Annual Election Period, is Oct. 15 to Dec. 7. During this time, people enrolled in Medicare can: Switch from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage plan and vice versa. Join, drop or switch a Part D prescription drug plan, […]

How to Have a Stress-Free Real Estate Experience

The real estate industry has adapted and sellers are taking full advantage of new real estate models. One of which is Every Door Real Estate.
IQ Air

How Poor Air Quality Is Affecting Our Future Athletes

You cannot control your child’s breathing environment 100% of the time, but you can make a huge impact.
Swedish Health Services

Special Coverage: National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

There are a wide variety of treatment options available for men with prostate cancer. The most technologically advanced treatment option in the Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform.
Marysville Police Department

Police Opportunities in a Growing, Supportive Washington Community

Marysville PD is looking for both lateral and entry level officers. Begin or continue your career in law enforcement for a growing, supportive community.

Small, Minority-Owned Businesses in King County and Pierce County Can Now Apply For $10,000 Relief Grants Through Comcast RISE

Businesses in King County and Pierce County can apply beginning on October 1, 2021, at www.ComcastRISE.com for a chance to receive a $10,000 relief grant.
KeyArena renovation breaks ground following NHL announcement