Itinerant Fan

Rogers Place

With the opening of Rogers Place in 2016, the hockey fans of Edmonton saw an upgrade to their live sports experience in a few ways.

Not only is the new facility a significant improvement over the Oilers’ previous home, the drab Northlands Coliseum (aka Rexall Place), it offers all the technological advancements you’d expect out of a recently opened venue. The arena’s downtown location means fans — and visitors — can head to the center of Edmonton rather than the less lively Northlands area, where the old building stood.

In addition, the location has also helped revitalize the area, bringing new residential, retail and entertainment options that can be enjoyed by sports fans and non-sports fans alike. 

After a lengthy down period, the Oilers have shown signs of becoming a contender again, led by one of the NHL’s most exciting players. But that’s just one of many reasons to make the trek north to catch a game at Rogers Place. The Western Hockey League’s Edmonton Oil Kings call the arena home as well, and it has quickly become the prime spot for concerts in the city.

  •   The Approach

    Rogers Place is just a few blocks from most of the major hotels in central Edmonton, so — weather permitting — it’s an easy walk for those visiting the city and staying downtown.

    For the uninitiated, though, it helps to know a little bit about Edmonton’s street numbering system. Downtown is located in the northwest quadrant of the city (which is why downtown addresses all have an “NW” at the end of them). And numbered streets run both north-south AND east-west — just know that avenues run east-west, streets north-south. So yes, it’s a little confusing, but not unusual for Edmonton, that Rogers Place lies at the intersection of 104 Avenue NW and 104 Street NW.

    If it is too cold to walk, Edmonton, like many cold-weather cities, has a network of sheltered walkways that allow pedestrians to navigate downtown without having to venture outside. Click here for a map to see how you can use it to get to Rogers Place.

    Edmonton’s light-rail system, known as the LRT, has a station at the arena’s doorstep, the MacEwen stop on the Metro line. If you’re using light rail and coming from outside the downtown area, make sure you are on the Metro line and not the Capital line, which runs along the same route through downtown and south of it but splits off just before reaching the MacEwen station.

    For those driving to the game, Rogers Place is surrounded by a number of private parking lots and structures scattered throughout the downtown area. The arena also offers advance-purchase parking through Parking Panda

  •   The Build-Up

    Though just a few blocks away from Edmonton City Hall, Rogers Place is on the northern edge of the downtown area. But that’s not to say there isn’t much to do around the arena. Indeed, a stated goal of the arena’s construction was to spur development in the surrounding area — the powers that be went so far as to give the newly formed area a name, the Ice District — and that development continues to take shape.

    Fans can have pregame fun without even crossing the street — the Grand Villa Casino flanks the east side of the arena, and within it are several restaurants, including a branch of the Canadian chain Match Eatery and Public House. The Downtown Community Arena, which the Oilers and Oil Kings use as a practice facility, is also adjacent to Rogers Place.

    More businesses are slated to open as construction around the Ice District continues. For a directory, click here.

    Within the arena structure, but open to the public, is the Molson Canadian Hockey House, where fans can meet for food and drink before going into the game. It opens one hour before arena gates do on game nights.

  •   The Ambiance

    It’ll take a while before Rogers Place offers up the history of its predecessor — after all, the Oilers did win five Stanley Cups while playing at Northlands Coliseum — but what it lacks in history, it makes up for in amenities and technological advances

    There are entrances at each corner of the building, but one of the more traveled ways in is via Ford Hall — the part of the structure that spans across 104 Avenue, and where the Molson Canadian Hockey House is located. Since it’s already elevated, it leads directly into the main concourse. Below it, at street level, you’ll find the statue of Wayne Gretzky that once stood outside the entrance to Northlands Coliseum before being relocated to the new arena, as well as the Oilers Hall of Fame.

    Once on the main concourse, you can begin to survey your food and drink options. Some of the more adventurous choices include a pierogy dog, Indian-style butter chicken and “tottine” (think poutine but with tater tots instead of fries). Click here for a directory of concession stands.

    In addition to Canadian beer brands such as Molson and Rickard’s, there are several places at which you can order a Caesar, Canada’s answer to the Bloody Mary.  

    If you’ve got time to kill and money to burn, check out Studio 99 on the Loge level, a veritable shrine to Wayne Gretzky’s Oilers career that also offers a pregame buffet spread for C$45.

    With two levels of luxury suites below, the upper seating bowl may feel a little bit steep, but views of the game remain good — a little bit like you’re on top of the action. If you’re having trouble seeing up top, Rogers Place does offer one of the largest center-hung scoreboards in the NHL, with high-definition screens, of course.

The Particulars

Home Teams
Edmonton Oilers

Address
10220 104 Ave. NW
Edmonton, AB T5J 4Y8

Year Opened
2016

Capacity
18,641

Upcoming Events
All times local
Detroit Red Wings at Edmonton Oilers
Tuesday, January 22, 2019
7:00 pm
Get tickets at SeatGeek »

Dierks Bentley with Jon Pardi
Thursday, January 24, 2019
7:00 pm
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Moose Jaw Warriors at Edmonton Oil Kings
Friday, January 25, 2019
7:00 pm
Get tickets at SeatGeek »

Harlem Globetrotters - Edmonton
Saturday, January 26, 2019
2:00 pm
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Prince George Cougars at Edmonton Oil Kings
Sunday, January 27, 2019
4:00 pm
Get tickets at SeatGeek »


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