PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The former home of the Pittsburgh Penguins is one step closer to becoming a permanent fixture in Pittsburgh.
According to our news partners at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Civic Arena received a 5-1 vote from the city’s historic review commission to head to a formal hearing to decide whether the building will receive designation as an historical landmark.
The Civic Arena went down this road nine years ago. The same commission gave approval to head to a formal hearing before voting against historical designation.
Even though the arena received an overwhelming vote of approval, it has three very persuasive groups opposed to the historic designation.
The Pittsburgh Penguins, Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and the building’s owner, the Allegheny County Sports & Exhibition Authority, all want the building demolished and the land turned into residential, office and commercial development.
The Penguins and the County Authority have argued against keeping arena saying it costs about $65,000 a month to maintain the structure and the arena is not bringing in enough revenue to support the building.
If the commission recommends historical designation it will then move to the planning commission and City Council for final approval.
The arena first opened in 1961 and became the home of the Penguins in 1967. Since its opening, the arena has hosted a multitude of events. In 1961, the arena hosted its first show, the Ice Capades. Other events held at the arena were: The Beatles in 1964, Elvis Presley in 1973, heavyweight boxing in 1981.
In addition, the Penguins won three Stanley Cup Championships in 1991, 1992 and 2009 as tenants, though they never clinched the cup on home ice.
The Stanley Cup was presented at the Civic Arena one time, in 2008, to the Detroit Red Wings.