The new home of the NHL’s Detroit Red Wings and NBA’s Detroit Pistons held its official ribbon-cutting last week. Designed by HOK, the arena will anchor a new 50-block mixed-use district in downtown.
Excerpted from the Detroit Free Press:
“We put our heart and soul into something truly spectacular for the people of this city, state and region,” said Christopher Ilitch, CEO Ilitch Holdings, at the September 5 debut of Detroit’s Little Ceasars Arena.
Ilitch, whose family built the arena, said the arena launches a new era in Detroit professional sports where four teams, including the Tigers and Lions, play within four blocks of each other in downtown, a claim no other city in the U.S. can make.
The arena, which replaces Joe Louis Arena as the home of the Red Wings, was designed by stadium designers HOK and features a playing surface that sits 40 feet below street level and the Via, an indoor street covered by a glass roof that connects the arena to the Red Wings offices, retail shops, and the box office.
The arena is part of a larger project known as District Detroit, a 50-block development planned around the arena that will feature entertainment, commercial and residential developments.
With a lower profile and a facade that utilizes buildings of lower heights, different window treatments, and various kinds of brick, the arena blends into its urban surroundings along Woodward Avenue.
In his remarks at the opening, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder said a glue was needed to connect the areas of Midtown and downtown Detroit.
“And that’s what this arena does,” he said.
Video of opening day at Little Caesars Arena via MLive Media Group.