The Sacramento Entertainment and Sports Center—now known as the Golden 1 Center—transformed a dilapidated and underutilized part of downtown Sacramento into a new, vibrant entertainment district that includes a large public plaza, restaurants, local retail shopping, a world-class hotel, and premium office space.

Why does this project matter?

The project, which replaced a long floundering retail center, now serves as a cohesive and vibrant gathering place for residents, visitors, and the community.

What is ESA doing to help?

A comprehensive EIR prepared by ESA analyzed the new 779,000-sq. ft., 17,500-seat arena and the 1.5 million square feet of retail, office, hotel, and residential uses within the former Downtown Plaza site. The project also involved authorization to construct six off-site digital signs on City-owned property as well as the transfer of several other development properties from City ownership to the Kings.

The EIR was certified in less than a year, and legal challenges to the report were rejected by the Superior Court and the 3rd District Court of Appeal, and request for review was denied by the Supreme Court. Onsite mitigation monitoring for the entire project site continued beyond the Golden 1 Center’s on-time opening in October 2016, through development of the Downtown Commons area.

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"One will not find many EIRs dealing with such a complicated, multi-faceted project that can survive unscathed from court challenges at all three judicial levels. The success of the EIR for the Sacramento Entertainment and Sports Center & Related Development Project is testimony to the outstanding work of ESA and its subconsultants, as well as the support and dedication of City staff."

John F. Shirey, Former City Manager,

City of Sacramento


Client City of Sacramento

Location Sacramento, CA


2016 Project of the Year, Urban Land Institute (ULI), Sacramento

2016 Outstanding Environmental Analysis Document, Association of Environmental Professionals (AEP)

2017 Best Real Estate Project, Sacramento Business Journal

2017 Sports Facility of the Year, Sports Business Journal

First LEED Platinum Indoor Sports Facility

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