Climate Pledge Arena

As the world’s first arena to achieve Zero Carbon certification by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI), the Climate Pledge Arena more than lives up to its name, sending a powerful message that it’s possible to create complicated, beautiful structures that are environmentally sustainable and contain every contemporary amenity.

When Climate Pledge Arena opened in 2021, it marked the start of a new era in sustainable venue design. With Amazon as the arena’s naming rights partner, Populous transformed its design approach to meet The Climate Pledge, a global initiative that commits signatories to net zero carbon across their businesses by 2040. Every detail of the project has been scrutinized to minimize its impact on the environment, setting a new standard for future arenas to follow. 

Climate Pledge Arena is Seattle’s largest arena — an entirely new venue built under an existing roof. It has revitalized a historic landmark, which was originally built for the 1962 World’s Fair, and cultivates the ultimate experience for fans coming to watch the NHL’s Seattle Kraken, WNBA’s Seattle Storm, concerts and other events. The new construction required the 44-million-pound roof to be lifted and suspended above the site while another 680,000 cubic yards of soil was removed underneath to nearly double the size of the former venue and create 360-degree pedestrian access. The original glass curtain walls were also restored, making Climate Pledge Arena the first in North America where someone can walk entirely around the facility while never losing sight of what’s inside. 

Inside, Climate Pledge Arena boasts the world’s first dual suspended professional arena scoreboards, which our designers introduced as a result of thorough analysis of on-ice and on-court action, spectator and athlete sightlines and flexibility requirements for shows and concerts. These scoreboards provide a strong connection between the audience and the action. There are 59 luxury suites, 19 of which are tunnel club suites beneath the seating bowl, giving fans a close-up view of players as they walk from the locker room to the ice or court. 




In 2023, Climate Pledge Arena was the first arena in the world to achieve Zero Carbon Certification from the ILFI, a global nonprofit that uses strict, data-based standards to determine carbon neutrality. The ILFI reviews 12 consecutive months of performance data to decide if a structure achieves net zero carbon emissions in its day-to-day operations and has offset the emissions from its construction period. The arena’s successful certification is a result of its numerous sustainable practices and operations. The facility is powered solely on renewable energy sources, including on-site solar energy on the atrium roof.

The design also supports water conservation systems — such as harvesting rainwater from the roof to turn it into the greenest ice in the NHL — and zero waste initiatives, including the elimination of single use plastics. The venue is home to a 200-foot living wall with greenery hanging overhead, an Amazon vision that Populous brought to life. The space also features an LED wall that details the importance of developing a zero carbon arena. 

Populous has designed the most beautiful arena in the world, and the Kraken are proud to call it home.

Tod Leiweke

CEO of the Seattle Kraken

Not just content with minimizing its own footprint, Climate Pledge Arena influences the behavior of its visitors too, encouraging the use of public transport, bicycles and on-foot journeys to the venue. The site design builds strong connections with the monorail and provides space for electric vehicle charging stations and bike valet services. Free public transit is also included with every event ticket. Rather than being surrounded with asphalt, Climate Pledge Arena is quite literally an arena in a park, something unheard of for a large public assembly venue in the United States, let alone one set in an urban neighborhood. This has given the site back to the Seattle Center campus and it serves as an open public space for the neighboring community.  

Climate Pledge Arena is one of the Pacific Northwest’s most significant private investments in sports and entertainment history. It also contributes to a critical movement within the industry to transition the built environment from a major contributor of greenhouse gas emissions towards a central solution to the climate crisis. These sustainable design strategies and ambitious targets set a new bar in live sports and entertainment. 

Facts & Figures

  • Hockey game capacity


  • Basketball game capacity


  • Concert capacity


  • Square feet


  • Tons of preserved roofing material conserved


  • Tons of earth excavated to be reused in nearby communities


  • 2023

    • Engineering News Record: Best of the Best Projects – Sports/Entertainment
    • Washington State Historic Preservation Office Awards: Outstanding Sustainable Rehabilitation
    • American Institute of Graphic Arts: Environmental/Experiential Design Awards
  • 2022

    • Sports Business Journal: Sports Facility of the Year
  • 2021

    • VenuesNow All-Stars: Venues and Innovation
6 items.
  • Chris Carver Senior Principal, Founder Kansas City
  • Kurt Amundsen Senior Principal, Senior Architect Kansas City
  • Geoff Cheong Senior Principal, Senior Architect Kansas City
  • Todd Spangler Principal, Senior Architect Kansas City
  • Kelly Holton Senior Principal, Brand Activation Director Kansas City
  • Chris Minter Principal, Senior Architect Kansas City

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