Posts

Hockey Stadium

Amazon Renames Seattle NHL Stadium ‘Climate Pledge Arena’ In New Green Initiative

Amazon has officially secured the naming rights for Seattle’s downtown arena that will be the home for the city’s new NHL team as well as the WNBA’s Storm team. Amazon made the announcement this week that they would be deciding the name of the arena, however, many were shocked to learn that the company wouldn’t include its name in the title; something that’s fairly typical when it comes to naming stadium-type establishments after the corporations that sponsor them (Staples Center, Citi Field, AT&T Stadium, etc.). 

Instead, the stadium will be named Climate Pledge Arena and will feature several new green initiatives to make the future of live sports entertainment more environmentally friendly. 

Embed from Getty Images

“I think this is going to be a transformative moment in our industry. Amazon said, ‘We’ll act like a naming rights partner, but let’s do this the right way. We don’t need any more branding. What we need is to go save the planet.’ It was brilliant,” a spokesperson for the arena claimed. 

As mentioned Climate Pledge Arena is going to run with the intention of remaining completely green. In fact, Amazon is attempting to make it the first arena in the world to earn a net zero carbon certifications by the International Living Future Institute.  There are a multitude of features that will be implemented into the structure, games themselves, and clean up procedures for the stadium. 

All ice for hockey games will be created using recycled rainwater thanks to a massive tank that’s located underground and adjacent to the arena. This tank is specifically designed to collect runoff rainwater from the roof of the arena, but the arena’s team is also working on a way to easily allow fans at home to bring their own recycled rainwater to help aid the running of the stadium.

Embed from Getty Images

All events will also be “zero waste,” a decision that according to the team was inspired by singer Billie Eilish, who before the coronavirus pandemic was embarking on a world tour for her most recent album. Eilish asked every venue that she was planning to play on her tour to eliminate as much single-waste plastic as possible, to which they all happily obliged to get one of the biggest artists of the year to play at their establishment. 

 “I was like, I can’t believe she got an entire syndication of arenas to come along and finally address this issue. I was so in awe that she made this part of the deal. When we were debating this, I said if she could do it for a night, couldn’t we do this for 365 nights?” said Tim Leiweke, CEO of the Oak View Group. 

75% of the arena’s food vendors will be sourced seasonally by local farmers and producers as a means of helping local small businesses. Unused food that’s still edible and viable will also be donated to various food charities in the area. The arena will also solely run on electricity, and carbon emissions and sustainability performance is set up to be closely monitored and will also be made public record to all American citizens so they can see for themselves how green the arena is. 

The cost of the building overall is set to be around $900 million and will be able to hold 18,000 sports fans. Its projected to host around 200 events each year, which will also include concerts. The building is currently still under construction, as production was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic, but it’s expected to make its public debut with Seattle’s brand new NHL team in 2021-2022 (the dates are subject to change based on how the pandemic progresses). 

American Police

Seattle Police Want To Return To Vacated Precinct Located In ‘Autonomous Zone’

Seattle’s Mayor, Jenny Durkan, has addressed the group of protesters who have an established autonomous zone in the city’s Capitol Hill neighborhood this week, and told them all that “it’s time for people to go home.” While the mayor ensured that no one would be removed by force, she would be meeting with Black-led community organizations as a means of persuading them to leave the area while they continue out their peaceful protests. 

Police were initially pulled out of the Seattle Police Department precinct located in the neighborhood as tensions rose amid the death of George Floyd at the hands of the police. This past weekend, however, three separate shootings occurred at night in the same area as the autonomous zone, motivating officials to get all protesters out at least during the nighttime hours of the day.

Embed from Getty Images

“We can still accommodate people who want to protest peacefully. But the impacts on the businesses and residents in the community are now too much,” Durkan said

The East Precinct was boarded up and abandoned by officers after protesters set up an autonomous zone directly outside of the building. Police Chief Carmen Best said that the decision to leave the precinct was not her idea and expressed her anger to citizens when the decision was made. Mayor Durkan, on the other end of it, told media outlets that she thought the autonomous zone could be “seen as the Summer of Love.” 

However, while the message behind the zone is strong and powerful, Durkan still believes she needs to get her officers back in the building, and claims it’s literally a matter of “life or death.” There’s been over 100,000 emergency calls since the creation of the zone that could’ve been more easily responded to if first responders didn’t have to work though a “hostile crowd,” according to officials.

Embed from Getty Images

Protesters view the hostility as coming more so from the side of authority, as Durkan herself even pointed out, the victims of the three shootings that occurred near the autonomous zone were all black men; one of which was just 19-years-old, who unfortunately ended up passing away from his injuries. 

“It is not unnoticed that the victims were Black men, there have also been reports of rape, arson and property destruction. We cannot walk away from the truth of what is happening here. This is about life or death,” Mayor Durkan said.

Chief Best has since denied claims that her department was not responding to calls in the zone purposefully, and emphasized to the public that Seattle itself is “not under siege” and officers are “responding to every call in every area of the city.” This specific statement, however, came out directly after Seattle Police officers received a department wide email that instructed them not to respond to calls for service within the autonomous zone unless they were responding to a “mass casualty event such as an active shooter or fire.” 

Seattle Police spokesman Detective Patrick Michaud confirmed to media outlets that the email was in fact authentic but officers were still responding to any significant safety issues within the neighborhood. Other minor calls from within the zone are responded to by requesting the caller to meet first responders outside of the area.