When it opens this August, Sacramento’s Golden 1 Center will not be the typical building that can be picked up and dropped off in any other city. This venue is truly Sacramento-centric.
The $507 million, 17,500-seat Golden 1 Center, referred to by Wired magazine as the Tesla of Arenas, will be chock full of amenities.
“From the traditional guest experience and overall attention to detail, those are things that have existed forever,” said Juan Rodriguez, general manager. “Now we’re trying to touch on the technology to create a frictionless environment.”
The indoor/outdoor design and open concourse allows fans to stand at concession areas while watching games or concerts. The copious amount of windows and glass also bring in natural light and create a glowing effect for those looking at the building from the outside.
With a lower bowl that’s one of the largest in the NBA, fans are brought closer to the action during games and nearer to the stage for concerts.
The premium amenities also have been created for all attendees, rather than just VIPs.
“Sacramento doesn’t have any true Fortune 500 companies, so instead our suites are fan-focused,” said Rodriguez.
The 34 suites are twice as large as those at the current Sleep Train Arena, and suite partners will have access to three exclusive clubs on the premium level, including two Skyboxes that will overlook the concourse and have a direct view to the outside.
“Depending on which way you look out and where you are in the building, you might see the capital or the Tower Bridge,” said Rodriguez. “You get that feeling that you’re in an area and region.”
Rodriguez also explained that Golden 1 Center will have 48 lofts that seat six-t0-ten people and are designed to feel like a living room.It’s a more affordable option for companies that don’t necessarily need a large suite for every single event at the Golden 1 Center.
“This is exactly what smaller companies and smaller organizations need,” he said. “Six to ten friends can walk in and go hang out for a night and go enjoy a Paul McCartney concert or a King’s game.”
Five bay doors measuring 150 feet wide and 60 feet tall will open up one at a time or together to cool Golden 1 Center sustainably, while bringing the outside in.
In terms of the technology, Golden 1 Center’s system will enable fans to connect seamlessly and maneuver more easily around the facility in terms of parking, concessions and ticketing.
“We spend so much time with our devices that this is going to give our guests the opportunity to communicate with everybody inside and outside Golden 1 Center,” said Rodriguez. “Within our app, guests will be able to let us know how comfortable they are in their seats.”
A displaced air system will ensure air in the lower bowl doesn’t get pushed from above, but rather comes from below. Tied into Golden 1 Center’s CMMS (Computerized Maintenance Management System), this will allow the building’s management to react accordingly and be proactive.
Golden 1 Center also has been designed with big tours in mind, incorporating show power on both ends as well as convenient load-in and load-out capabilities.
“Our first 10 rows in the lower bowl are retractable seating, so artists have flexibility on whether to grow the floor or not,” says Rodriguez. “Our reading capacity is at 200,000. Trying to create that environment, our sound system is a state of the art. Even those shows that bring in their own components will have the opportunity to tie into our video screens.”
The dressing rooms, green room, catering area and press conference areas are all on one side of Golden 1 Center. There also are auxiliary locker rooms for extra space, as well as tour production offices and state-of-the-art NBA locker rooms.
“Obviously all of our high-end furniture and TVs are in there, but it’s also about flexibility, so we can make it as simple or all-encompassing as the artist wants,” said Rodriquez. “The key is to make Golden 1 Center a chameleon for every performer.”
The design takes into account that Golden 1 Center’s daily operations will not be in the way of a tour coming in and going out.
Sustainability also is a big initiative at Golden 1 Center, which will be the first NBA arena running off 100% solar power provided by solar farms.
The team has been working with the Green Sports Alliance to create its environmentally-friendly operating procedures.
“We’re using much of our sustainable effort with recycling and our building automation system to control what we do,” said Rodriquez. “Our efforts started from the day when we broke ground and 99% of the existing facility that was here previously was recycled.”
Along with serving as a model of sustainability, the venue already has become a catalyst for downtown growth. The project includes up to 1.5 million square feet of additional development. including 475,000 square feet of office space, 350,000 square feet of retail, a 250-room hotel and up to 500,000 square feet for residential units.
“With this downtown partnership, there’s an excitement that hasn’t existed in Sacramento forever,” said Rodriguez. “We are truly growing into that next great American city.”