Located only blocks from the City of Kent’s vibrant and widely recognized Kent Station, the ShoWare Center serves as home to anchor tenant Seattle Thunderbirds hockey team. The Center also houses a broad range of events including concerts, car and truck shows, high school graduations, roller derby, indoor football, gymnastic tournaments and home and garden shows.


The owner wanted a building that could serve as a model for high-performing entertainment facilities around the country. Sports and entertainment facilities are complex building with high demands for water and energy and require creative approaches to reduce the draw on utilities. The ice-making equipment for the hockey rink also expels a significant amount of heat that had to be managed. Finally, the team was on a tight budget and an even tighter timeline—the project was completed in just 27 months.

Paladino Approach

Paladino and Company served as the Owner’s representative for sustainable design, which included:

  • Assessing and optimizing an established concept design
  • Working collaboratively with the Owner and the design team to identify a viable and achievable green building and LEED strategy
  • Providing design validation through technical analysis such as energy modeling, daylighting analysis, water balance calculations
  • Coaching the team to deliver against the green building and LEED strategies
  • Validating the design against a third party rating system (LEED), and managing the submittal process
  • Green housekeeping


A strong collaborative effort between all project team members throughout the design process helped to creatively identify green measures that would reduce operating costs, while staying within budget and on schedule. The project received an Innovation and Design credit for a system that collects extra heat generated from the ice-making equipment and reuses it to warm the ground under the rink and melt the ice in the Zamboni pit. The project team was originally targeting a LEED Silver certification, but because of a committed effort by all members of the project team, ShoWare Center earned LEED Gold with 40 points and the honor of being the first LEED Gold certified sports arena in North America to achieve such a rating.