Northgate Mall might actually be a place people want to visit come this fall. Three mega projects all slated to be finished around the same time will make getting to the neighborhood easier for city folk from all over; Seattle’s Light Rail will finally connect the city to Northgate, and a pedestrian bridge connecting the east side of the neighborhood to the west over I-5 will finish. Why the clamor, though, to get to Northgate if there’s nothing but the remnants of a hollowed out mall?
The third and final project materializing around this time will be the Seattle Kraken’s new headquarters and training facility. Located in the Northgate shopping mall (and now its crown jewel), Northgate Ice Centre will not only be the home to the Kraken, but to two other multipurpose ice rinks for a grand total of three. The general public will be allowed to watch the team practice as the main rink holds up to just over 1,000 spectators.
Watching the team practice is just the beginning of Northgate Ice Centre’s aspirations. They’re also aiming to have the arena be a hub for people to enjoy watching the Kraken play. The main rink will have a giant screen that allows fans to watch live NHL games, and an outdoor promenade (the former grounds of Nordstrom, for those familiar with the mall) will have a restaurant/bar plus more viewing options. There are no tickets or need for reservations. Just show up and enjoy.
The other two rinks will be home to a majority of other events. The Greater Seattle Hockey League (GSHL) as well as the female Seattle Wild are already slated for games and tournaments at the arena. When not in use, one of the rinks will be open to the general public and will have ice sports rentals. There will also be new retail offerings and a theatre in the public area.