World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Xcel Energy Center

Xcel Energy Center
The X, The Hive

Location 199 Kellogg Boulevard West
St. Paul, MN 55102
Owner City of St. Paul
Operator Minnesota Sports & Entertainment

Ice hockey / Box lacrosse: 17,954 (2012-present),[1] 18,064 (2000-2012)

  • End Stage 12,999
  • Center Stage 20,554
Field size 650,000 square feet (60,000 m2)
Surface Multi-surface
Broke ground June 23, 1998
Opened September 29, 2000
Construction cost $170 million
($178 million in 2016 dollars[2])
Architect Populous
Project manager Project Management Consultants, LLC.[3]
Structural engineer Geiger Engineers PC
Services engineer M-E Engineers. Inc.[4]
General contractor Mortenson/Thor[4]
Minnesota Wild (NHL) (2000–present)
Minnesota Swarm (NLL) (2005–2015)

The Xcel Energy Center (also known as "The X") is a multi-purpose arena, located in Saint Paul, Minnesota. It is named for its locally based corporate sponsor Xcel Energy. With an official capacity of 17,954, the arena has four spectator levels: one suite level and three general seating levels.[5]

The arena is owned by the city of Saint Paul and operated by Minnesota Sports & Entertainment. The building is home to the NHL's Minnesota Wild and is the former home of the NLL's Minnesota Swarm. It is on the same block as the RiverCentre convention facility, Roy Wilkins Auditorium and the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, in downtown St. Paul. It also served as official home to the 2008 Republican National Convention.[6]


  • History 1
  • Features 2
  • Attendance records 3
  • Sustainability Efforts 4
  • Other events 5
  • Funding 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


The arena opened on September 29, 2000. It was built on the site of the demolished St. Paul Civic Center. The push for a new arena in Saint Paul grew after the National Hockey League's Minnesota North Stars moved to Dallas. Saint Paul unsuccessfully courted the NHL's Hartford Whalers and Winnipeg Jets under Mayor Norm Coleman, but the Civic Center was an obstacle to both deals.[7]

In order to get an NHL expansion team, Saint Paul needed to build a new arena. After several failed attempts to get funding, the project was funded by the state in April 1998. The state gave Saint Paul a no interest loan for $65 million of the $130 million project, though the state forgave $17 million of that loan in exchange for high school sports championships played at the arena.[7]

In 2004, it was named by ESPN as the best overall sports venue in the U.S. The 10 millionth person passed through the gates on July 3, 2007.

The Twin Cities were selected as the hosting metropolis for the 2008 Republican National Convention on September 27, 2006 and the arena was chosen as the main venue.[8] The Republican National Convention was held here on September 1–4.[8]

In 2010, a Minnesota Wild game at the 'X' was listed as the third best stadium experience in North America, according to the ESPN Magazine. First on the list went to the Minnesota Twins and Target Field.[9]

The arena played host to the politically motivated Vote for Change Tour on October 5, 2004, featuring performances by Bright Eyes, R.E.M. and Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band (with special guest John Fogerty and unannounced guest Neil Young).[10]


The concourse areas contain a hockey jersey from every high school in Minnesota hanging on the wall, reflecting the "State of Hockey." Surrounding the arena at all four corners are "crows nests." One features an organ built into the shell of a Zamboni and is played during Wild games. The second nest features a lighthouse which houses a foghorn that is blasted when the team takes the ice before games, for all Wild goals, and after a victory. The third is often used for the "Let's play hockey!" announcement before puck drop each game, along with game ops interviews, announcements, and fan contests. The fourth provides an additional stage for various uses.

Prior to its opening, the arena installed an integrated scoring, video, information and advertising display system from Daktronics, based in Brookings, South Dakota. The system includes a large LED circular, center-hung scoreboard with multiple displays, nearly 1,100 feet (340 m) of ribbon display technology mounted on the fascia and large video displays outside the facility.[11] The center ice display was replaced during the summer of 2014. An array of 10 LED screens with the largest measuring 37.5 feet wide by 19 feet high.[11] In the Summer of 2015 the arena began replacing every seat in the building with cushioned seating. They hope to have this project finished by early 2016.

Attendance records

  • March 6, 2015: 21,609 fans attended the 2015 State Boys’ Hockey Tournament Class AA semifinals at Xcel Energy Center, setting a new record for the largest crowd to ever attend an indoor hockey game in the state of Minnesota.[12]
  • March 9, 2012: The Minnesota State High School League Boys hockey tournament again set a new attendance record during the 2012 AA semifinal session. Hill-Murray and Moorhead played in the first game followed by Benilde St-Margaret's and Lakeville South in front of a crowd of 19,893.[13]
  • March 8, 2008: The Minnesota State High School League Boys hockey tournament set a new attendance record during the AA semifinal session. Edina and Benilde-St. Margaret's played in the first game followed by Roseau and Hill-Murray in front of a crowd of 19,559.
  • February 8, 2004: the NHL All-Star Game set a record for attendance at a hockey game in Minnesota at 19,434.
  • The record attendance for a Wild game was set May 6, 2014 at 19,416, against the Chicago Blackhawks.
  • On October 28, 2003, Shania Twain set the arena's single-night concert attendance record of 20,554.
  • On March 17, 2007, 19,463 spectators watched the final game of the WCHA Final Five tournament, the largest crowd ever for an indoor United States college ice hockey game[14] (i.e. not including games held in football stadiums such as the Cold War).
  • On November 3 & 4, 2012, Madonna performed two sold out shows on her record-breaking MDNA Tour.
  • On January 19, 2013, 19,298 fans witnessed the Wild defeat the Colorado Avalanche in the first game following the shortened 2012-2013 season. It also marked the debuts of signees Zach Parise and Ryan Suter.[15]
  • Since opening the doors of the Xcel Energy Center on September 29, 2000, the Wild had a sellout for every single game, which was finally broken on October 16, 2010 (totaling 400 consecutive home games as of March 8, 2010).[16]
  • On March 4, 2013, Maroon 5 played to a sold out crowd of over 19,000; making it one of Maroon 5's biggest crowds ever.

Sustainability Efforts

In 2014 the campus of the Xcel Energy Center, RiverCentre, and Legendary Roy Wilkins Auditorium have earned three world class certifications.

  • Green Globes Certification – July, 2014
  • APEX / ASTM Certification – August, 2014
  • LEED Certification - September, 2014

The Xcel Energy Center and RiverCentre Campus is the first complex in the world to receive all three of the above listed certifications. The road to achieving these awards has spanned several years, and could not have happened without the support of all staff members. Some of the steps taken in order to achieve these awards are:

  • 60% of all waste is recycled
  • 40% of staff commute by bus, bike, carpool or an efficient vehicle
  • 90% of cleaning products meet green standards

In addition to the efforts made by staff, the Xcel Energy Center has partnered with the NHL to join Change the Course, a national initiative promoting water conservation and restoration. In order to highlight the incredible achievements the X has earned, they have produced: Exceptionally Green: Minnesota Wild, Saint Paul RiverCentre and Xcel Energy Center

Other events

- The "X" is the site of the WCHA Final Five, the Minnesota Girl's High School Volleyball Tournament, and the High School Wrestling tournaments, as well as the host of the Minnesota State High School League-sponsored volleyball state tournament. - It hosted the 2002 and 2011 NCAA Frozen Four. - The National Lacrosse League's Minnesota Swarm began regular season play in the arena in January 2005 until they moved to Georgia in 2015.


In 2013 the Minnesota State Legislature passed an omnibus jobs, housing and commerce bill that included forgiveness of the remaining $32.7 million loan for Xcel Energy Center.

In 1998, the state made a $65 million interest-free loan toward construction of the $130 million arena, $17 million of which was forgiven when the team agreed to allow amateur and public events. That left a loan of $48 million.

Under the terms of the forgiveness deal in this year’s omnibus jobs, housing and commerce bill, St. Paul’s annual loan payment will be reduced by $500,000 in 2014 and again in 2015. The balance of the loan will be forgiven in 2016. The city still owes $56.8 million in bonds on the arena, of the $72.7 million it borrowed in 1998.[17]


  1. ^ Doyle, Mike (January 19, 2013). "GAMEDAY: Wild vs. Avalanche". National Hockey League. Retrieved September 18, 2013. 
  2. ^ Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–2014. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
  3. ^ Project Management Consultants: Project Profiles - Ballparks, Stadium & Arenas
  4. ^ a b "Xcel Energy Center Facts & Figures". SportsBusiness Journal. October 2, 2000. Retrieved November 7, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Xcel Energy Center". Xcel Energy Center. July 6, 2000. Retrieved February 22, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Xcel Energy Center - Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul Minnesota". Retrieved February 22, 2013. 
  7. ^ a b Rybin, Virginia (September 27, 2000). "St. Paul New Arena is Tale of Survival".  
  8. ^ a b Republicans start arena conversion for convention USA Today.
  9. ^ Van Denburg, Hart. "ESPN Magazine calls Target Field the best stadium in North America". City Pages. Retrieved 16 May 2014. 
  10. ^ "2004 Setlists". July 17, 2004. Retrieved November 7, 2011. 
  11. ^ a b "Xcel Energy Center". Prairie Biz Magazine. July 1, 2009. Retrieved September 18, 2013. 
  12. ^ "Minnesota State High School Boy's Hockey". 
  13. ^ Leighton, Tim (March 10, 2012). "State Hockey: Hill-Murray Coach Discusses Jack Jablonski's Effect on BSM".  
  14. ^ Tour De Force: Wheeler Nets OT Goal To Give Minnesota Broadmoor Trophy
  15. ^ Eide, Nathan (January 19, 2013). "Minnesota Wild vs. Colorado Avalanche: Game Recap". Hockey Wilderness. Retrieved February 22, 2013. 
  16. ^ "2010 Hockey Day Minnesota Announced". National Hockey League. June 22, 2009. Retrieved November 7, 2011. 
  17. ^

External links

  • Xcel Energy Center official website
Events and tenants
Preceded by
First Arena
Home of the
Minnesota Wild

2000 – present
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Pepsi Arena
Albany, New York
Host of the
Frozen Four

Succeeded by
HSBC Arena
Buffalo, New York
Preceded by
Office Depot Center
Host of the
NHL All-Star Game

Succeeded by
American Airlines Center
Preceded by
first arena
Home of the
Minnesota Swarm

2005 – 2015
Succeeded by
Arena at Gwinnett Center
Preceded by
Ford Field
Detroit, Michigan
Host of the
Frozen Four

Succeeded by
Tampa Bay Times Forum
Tampa, Florida
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.