AECOM named as lead architects

Discussion in 'Off the Court' started by VF21, Aug 25, 2013.

  1. VF21

    VF21 #KingsFansForever Staff Member Contributor

    Kings Announce AECOM as Lead Architect for Downtown Arena
    World-Renowned Architecture Firm Set to Transform Downtown Sacramento

    SACRAMENTO – After a highly competitive process involving some of the top architectural firms in the world, the Sacramento Kings today announced AECOM has been selected as the lead architect for the downtown entertainment and sports complex.

    AECOM is renowned for designing some of the most state-of-the-art sports and entertainment venues in the world. AECOM is responsible for the acclaimed London 2012 Olympic Park and is also designing the Rio 2016 Olympic Park. AECOM has served as lead architect of 11 NBA arenas, including the Barclays Center – home of the Brooklyn Nets and the 2012 Sports Business Journal Facility of the Year. Locally, AECOM designed Aggies Stadium at the University of California, Davis.

    “We have assembled the best artists in the world to design and build the new arena,” said Kings owner Vivek Ranadivé. “From the Bird’s Nest in Beijing to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, AECOM has the resume to design and create the most technologically advanced and fan-centric arena in the world.”

    The Kings also selected ICON Venue Group as the project manager and Turner as the lead builder.

    “We now have a world-class team in place and we look forward to developing what we believe will be an important civic space, and the loudest building in sports, right here in the heart of downtown Sacramento,” said Kings President Chris Granger.

    AECOM plans to have conceptual renderings ready this fall and final design completed in early to mid 2014. AECOM will do all the architectural design work in Sacramento to ensure ongoing local input in the design process.

    “We are thrilled to be selected to design the new downtown arena,” said Jon Niemuth, AIA, NCARB, LEED, Director of AECOM Sports, Americas. “For some of the best fans in the NBA, we are prepared to design an arena that will not only provide a tremendous home court advantage for the Kings, but that will also create an amazing experience for everyone who steps foot in and around the facility. This project will transform downtown and the entire region.”

    “This is another huge win for the Kings and for Sacramento," said Mayor Kevin Johnson. "AECOM's selection continues to prove that the best and brightest in the world believe in this project and in our community. I applaud the Kings for an inspired selection and can't wait to see what AECOM designs for the new arena!"
  2. Trueblood

    Trueblood Member

    I look forward to seeing the renderings this fall. That bizarre default online picture that the Bee uses when they have an arena related story isn't the model. That looks more like Barclays Center inside of a bubble next to buildings that resemble nothing like the actual downtown Sacramento buildings. I realize that AECOM was the architect for Barclays but I doubt the Kings wind up with a similar looking building. The steel panels covering Barclays are a necessity in New York for security purposes but probably aren't needed in California.

    Another article had some positive news as well. They mentioned that construction could start as early as August of 2014. If that's so, the arena could definitely be ready for opening night of the 2016-2017 season. That seems like an optimistic projection but a lot depends on how soon they could start demolition of the mall and how quickly they could tear it down after that.

    I hear a lot of people saying that the mall isn't profitable so if that's so and there's no future for it, could they begin demolition before the EIR is done or would they have to completely finish the environmental process before taking it down?
  3. Livinthedream

    Livinthedream Well-Known Member

    I'm not worried about the arena looking like Barclays Center on the outside. I'm sure it will be more representative of our region when finished. I am more concerned with the interior. The Barclays Center is great for basketball, but doesn't allow for hockey. We're not in the market for a hockey team now, but the arena is to be around for at least 30 years. Who's to say we won't be ready for one within that time. We could handcuff ourselves if the hockey conversion takes the capacity down to 14,500 or even as low as 12,000 like with Bankers Life Fieldhouse. The ability to host Olympic hockey could be threatened as well, should Reno/Tahoe continue with their Winter Olympic bid.

    The only wishes I have are that the can be easily renovated when needed and that it is friendly to other sports. I have a feeling that more than just basketball will be played in that arena in the future. We are not a big enough market to build a basketball specific arena and then a separate hockey specific arena.
  4. VF21

    VF21 #KingsFansForever Staff Member Contributor

    I have every confidence in AECOM and Vivek designing an arena complex that will be the jewel in the crown for Sacramento and the NBA. I don't think they're going to limit themselves or not plan for the future. AECOM has an incredible reputation and designs buildings to meet the needs of their clients. They'll do so again this time. I mean no offense, but to think they won't is just silly.
  5. Livinthedream

    Livinthedream Well-Known Member

    Fedex Forum, Sprint Center, Barclays Center, Time Warner Cable arena all have limited hockey capacity. It's not to say that AECOM couldn't come up with a design that would have more capacity for hockey. This is where the city would have to voice their preference. From what I've heard in the past, the city liked the Bankers Life Fieldhouse model, so their priorities seem to be basketball centric. Until I hear something different, I'll have a little bit of concern.
  6. VF21

    VF21 #KingsFansForever Staff Member Contributor

    You and I will have to agree to look at this differently. AECOM has designed buildings to meet the needs of their clients. I'm pretty sure if Indiana would have wanted the possibility of capacity for hockey, it would have been included. Right now, we have ONE major professional sports team. As long as the new entertainment and sports complex meets the NBA standards, which I'm pretty sure it will far exceed, I'll be very happy. I honestly believe Vivek and the city will do an incredible job in making sure the ESC meets current and future needs.
  7. Warhawk

    Warhawk The cake is a lie. Staff Member Contributor

  8. Gary

    Gary Well-Known Member

    Do you know if they are still making it "hockey capable"? I would hope that they would allow for hockey, even if it was Sharks, Ducks and Kings pre-season games. I would love it if that could lead to us getting a team someday.
  9. VF21

    VF21 #KingsFansForever Staff Member Contributor

    No idea. But, as I stated above, I have no doubts whatsoever that the new ESC will be designed to meet current and future needs with as much variety as possible. Can't imagine why it wouldn't be.
  10. Livinthedream

    Livinthedream Well-Known Member

    I never questioned AECOMs ability to build an arena. I question what the city wants. Fact remains that AECOM has mostly built arenas that are not NHL hockey friendly. The city has routinely mentioned Bankers Life Fieldhouse as an ideal arena. AECOM designed this. AECOM is designing new Warriors arena, which is not NHL friendly. Point is, a designer can build to suit. At the same time, when you pick a designer, you pick one that has a history of designing the type of building you want. If I want someone to design me a truck, I'm sure FIAT could do a fine job. but I'd probably go after the auto company that has a history of building trucks.

    I'm sure AECOM will do great at designing exactly what we ask for. But what are we asking for. We shall see.
  11. ///Mink

    ///Mink Member

    Fiat owns Iveco.
  12. Livinthedream

    Livinthedream Well-Known Member

    If I want a non industrial, non military, passenger truck that would appeal to
    your average American driver with 2.5 kids, Fiat doesn't come to mind. Does that cover it?
  13. ///Mink

    ///Mink Member

    Hopefully that's what you'd specify that when you went shopping.
  14. Gary

    Gary Well-Known Member

    This place better be hockey friendly for what we're paying for it. It would suck to have to build another place just for hockey if we got the Phoenix Coyotes or something. At least they could keep the Coyote name here in Sac since we have a ton of them out here.

    But I would like the group we have think bigger than basketball and perhaps get us a Hockey team. I would hope they would think bigger on the arena as well.

    When in St. Louis many years ago I had the "privilege" to visit the Blues home, and watch a couple games. What a dump. From a distance it looked like a large tin roof barn or aircraft hanger. It was just for Hockey, and built on the cheap.
  15. VF21

    VF21 #KingsFansForever Staff Member Contributor

    We might not be totally done with Ron Burkle quite yet. ;)
  16. Livinthedream

    Livinthedream Well-Known Member

    Thanks for helping me make my point.
  17. ///Mink

    ///Mink Member

    That was the idea. I would expect the city has a list of "wants" for the new arena and is not blindly telling AECOM, "Uhhhhh...just build me something. I dunno what."
  18. bajaden

    bajaden Well-Known Member

    The St. Louis arena was built a thousand years ago, or at least it seems like it. It was almost destroyed by a tornado which took the roof off the place. St. Louis has never had a problem building new facilities, and why they've never built a new hockey arena is beyond me. Perhaps because the Blues are just about their only customer. If they were to get another NBA franchise, the city would probably spring for a new arena that housed both sports.
  19. JB_kings

    JB_kings Well-Known Member

    I get the hockey friendly sentiment, but the fact is this building is to make the most of an NBA tenant. I don't know how close people have looked at facilities done for an NHL team, they have a significant amount of seats in the lower bowl that are poor for viewing basketball - very poor. The upper bowl on the end zones are also quite a bit further from the court. This ultimately reflects in the fan experience and the pricing of the seat.

    The arena is very likely going to look like Barclays or Banker's Life Fieldhouse. It's better for the fans and in turn the team can maximize the price it charges for seats. The owners of the Nets made the right decision for their needs and Kings owners will do the same. The city will defer to the Kings because they know that the return on seat ticket pricing is in both parties best interest. IMO, a hockey design will not be in the best interest from day one.
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013
  20. Trueblood

    Trueblood Member

    The current arena, which opened in 1993, was going to house the Grizzlies when Bill Laurie made his failed attempt at buying the team in '99. Then again, I'm not sure what type of sight lines there would have been for the NBA.
  21. Livinthedream

    Livinthedream Well-Known Member

    Right. AECOM makes awesome basketball centric arenas. That is why they were selected. I'm pretty sure a hockey friendly arena is not in the cards. I worry about what impact that may have on Sac in the future.
  22. Livinthedream

    Livinthedream Well-Known Member

    OK. You missed my point. My point is that you have an idea of what you want and need, then you go out and find the firm that has a history of delivering on exactly what you want. AECOM has history of building basketball focused arenas. Vivek knows this.

    I feel like I keep saying the same thing over and over again, so I'll just let it go.
  23. Kingsfan23

    Kingsfan23 Well-Known Member

    For me, I guess it just depends on the likelihood that we will ever be able to get a NHL team here. I think I can speak for some others on this board when I say I would be willing to sacrifice some NBA fan experience if we were able to have both NBA and NHL tenants in the future. I have to admit, that like Gary said, in shelling out this public subsidy for a top flight facility I did have dreams of it being able to hold the NHL as well. I'm worried if Vivek and the Kings owners are taking the lead on this that they are only concerned with how the arena directly affects their NBA efforts. However, we have never been linked to the NHL, I see no prospective buyer wanting to bring it here, and we may way down the line in markets as far as getting a hockey team in the span on the next few decades (lifespan of the arena), so if you believe our chances for the NHL are not great to begin with than you do not sacrifice NBA fan experience/other event experience to accommodate it.
  24. chief bromden

    chief bromden Well-Known Member

    I like to think that the AHL would be possible... with the Sharks affiliate potentially a great fit. Not sure what kind of contract they have with Worcester though. ECHL is also growing. The NHL would be a real longshot, but I don't think that the top level is necessary. In the end, it'd be nice to create the option for a hockey tenant.
  25. Gary

    Gary Well-Known Member

    Oh I know. I just remember when I was a kid going to that place. From a distance it looked like a barn because of that rounded dome thing they had on top. It was an ugly building. Since then they had built a new arena (after doing some research) that looks good. That old arena was in a bad neighborhood too lol. I remember my brother telling me to lock the doors hehe.
  26. Gary

    Gary Well-Known Member

    Very much so. I am NOT a hockey fan right now. I probably watch maybe one or two games a year, and I do not have a favorite team or anything. There are a few NHL teams that are floundering at their current locations from what I have read (with Phoenix probably being the most at risk team) and I believe there will be a few teams switching locations in the next 10 years. I know there are cities who had originally lost their team that will be getting teams back, like Hartford and Quebec. A few other cities want their first NHL team like Portland and Houston. I think Portland would be a good location, but not Houston. It's too far south.
  27. Warhawk

    Warhawk The cake is a lie. Staff Member Contributor

    My family goes to see the Stockton Thunder on occasion - my wife enjoys it more than basketball and the tickets are cheaper. :p You should check it out!

    But like you, I don't really have any favorite teams. Don't watch it on TV. If I had to pick a favorite NHL team it would be the Sharks (geography), but I have never been to a Sharks game and don't know the players. Kinda like the River Cats; I am a bigger fan of theirs than any MLB team.
  28. VF21

    VF21 #KingsFansForever Staff Member Contributor

    Exactly. This is about the NBA and Downtown. I too understand the sentiment but I do not expect Vivek and Co. to do anything to take away from making this arena a true jewel in the crown of both Sacramento and the NBA. Hockey isn't a requirement in that regard. It's a "might be nice" ... but as you've pointed out, it might not be practical.
  29. HighFlyingMonkey

    HighFlyingMonkey Well-Known Member

    Meh, I think NHL is a pipedream to be honest. Growing up in Sacramento, I just never got the feeling there is that much interest in hockey in the area. Don't have any data to back up that feeling, just what I've seen growing up. Personally, I'd like Sacramento to stay a one-sport town (its part of the charm), but if another sport was on the table, I'd say Baseball would be most likely to be successful. Probably would have something to do with luring the A's from Oakland.

    Can't blame Vivek/AECOM for focusing on Basketball first.
  30. Livinthedream

    Livinthedream Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately, due to our mid market size, Sacramento is underachieving. There is no charm in that.

    It is more financially difficult to support baseball than hockey or football. But if we want to talk baseball, the fact that the builders of Raley Field failed to follow through with plans to make that ball park expandable has an impact. The A's are searching for a home and the lack of having a a ready made facility takes Sac out of the equation. It's much easier for the A's to make money to cover the cost of a new stadium in San Jose. Low stadium cost by moving to Sac would have been something we could pitch.

    Sac shouldn't take themselves out of the hockey argument or any other opportunity simply because we can't envision it now.

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