Retail Properties

Castle Ice Arena

This project started with a small tired neighborhood grocery anchored shopping center.  After acquisition we added two pad buildings and 7000 SF of small shops and modernized the existing building storefronts.  The acquisition included a large piece of unused land.  As we were unable to find an expanded grocer tenant, we chose to build a new Ice Arena on the parcel as a joint venture with a local Hockey Association.  The Seattle market area hadn't had a new Ice Arena built in over 20 years and we had to go to the far reaches of Canada, Tennessee and Pennsylvania to find our consultant team.

An interesting environmental note about this project; beside the street in front of the arena was a ditch that became designated as a "salmon stream" by the local jurisdiction.  This presented a list of development issues.  A creative aspect of our total mitigation solution resulted in using excess ice from the Zamboni  ice resurfacing machine.  To meet environmental requirements, it was determined the left over ice could be deposited beside the stream as a means to cool the water thereby enhancing the salmon habitat!

For the first few years of operation we participated in the ownership and management of the business.  While we have at times been partners with some of our tenants; I must say this was one of the more interesting business ventures we participated in.  Some of the programs we had to manage were Junior Hockey, Adult Hockey, Figure Skating, Learn to Skate and Public Skating; all activities with different scheduling needs and revenue potential.  Support services included a snack bar, skate shop, game room and skate rental.  Staffing was a budgeting nightmare with many volunteers, youth and a few real professionals.  I think an Ice Arena is a more complicated operation than a high end restaurant.