As Detroit evaluates the plans for a new arena for the NHL’s Red Wings, the city and its sports franchises have an opportunity to create a sustainable entertainment district in the heart of the city. The $450 million venue, which is designed to integrate with the MLB Tigers’ Comerica Park and the NFL Lions’ Ford Field. The plan is estimated to create $1.8 billion in total economic impact while creating over 8,000 construction jobs and 1,100 permanent positions after completion.
The Ilitch family, owners of the Tigers and Red Wings, has broken ground on a project that affords more than economic collaboration between the stadiums and teams. The proximity of the venues to one another presents opportunities for living roof spaces or the large-scale installment of photovoltaic panels for solar energy generation. At a time when many franchises are departing downtown corridors for suburban stadiums, Detroit’s model offers the potential to provide a blueprint for urban regeneration projects in other cities.