LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Henderson is quickly becoming a sports hub in Southern Nevada. And soon, it will be home to a brand new 6,000-seat arena.
Construction of the Dollar Loan Center started in October of last year. In the year since then, construction crews have made immense progress. Gabriel Mirabelli, Director of Enterprise Operations for the Vegas Golden Knights, says they're just a few months away from delivering a new home for several sports in Henderson.
"It's an aggressive timeline, but we knew what we wanted and we're really excited with the progress that that's been made so far," said Mirabelli.
Construction crews just passed a few major milestones: installing seats in the lower bowl, building the complex refrigeration system to keep the rink cold, and laying the concrete ice slab so the Silver Knights will have a surface to skate on.
"What you don't see under here is tons of piping running the continuous length of the ice surface up and down. And it connects to some valves that are over there that run back to our CIMCO ice machine, which cools it," said Mirabelli, pointing out where the piping lies underneath the freshly-poured concrete. "So look, you've just got to make sure you get it right the first time because you don't want to have to go back and dig up concrete."
We're also starting to see the arena's identity come to life. Fans will be able to enjoy food and drinks on the outdoor premium deck with views of the Las Vegas Strip in the background. Inside the arena, seats, suites, and additional decks provide views from every angle. And a lower roof will make for a more intimate environment.
"We want to bring a really exciting, fast-paced, entertaining product to the city of Henderson. We're trying to kind of emulate that college-style hockey barn, trying to bring a lot of energy, create a lot of noise. We are going to have a spot for our castle, so kind of a couple of lessons learned from T-Mobile. We think that's a really great element of our show. So you will see some of the same things, but we've got a couple tricks up our sleeve for here as well," said Mirabelli.
The Dollar Loan Center won't just be hosting hockey. It will also be home to the Southern Nevada Sports Hall Of Fame and the Vegas Knight Hawks, the valley's new Indoor Football League franchise, plus several other sports.
"We built this building to be flexible. We can host hockey, basketball, gymnastics events, volleyball, you name it. Again, we want this to be for the city of Henderson, as well as our Henderson Silver Knights. So we want high school athletics in here, we want college athletics in here, we really want it to be a building for the local community," said Mirabelli.
Mirabelli says the plan is to test the finished facility in February, so it will be ready to go for the Big West Basketball Championships from March 8-12. That would be the first-ever ticketed event at the Dollar Loan Center. The Henderson Silver Knights are scheduled to play their first-ever home game at the arena on April 2. And the Vegas Knight Hawks are scheduled to make their debut in the Dollar Loan Center in early May.