San Diego Politicians Are Thinking Of Pumping Public Money Into An Arena-Village Project

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The Midway Project will have an arena that may not have enough seats to accommodate an NHL or NBA franchise.

San Diego elected officials are thinking about giving financial assistance to the developers of the planned Midway Rising project that could eventually become an arena-village. San Diego needs an arena to have a chance to land either a National Hockey League or National Basketball Association franchise. Investors in Alpharetta, Georgia and Salt Lake City are planning to build arenas and are pushing to get NHL expansion franchises. The NBA may expand by two franchises after the league finalizes an American television contract. Las Vegas and Seattle more than likely will get the two expansion slots when the league gets around to expanding. San Diego has a 58-year-old arena that local elected officials and business leaders think needs to be replaced. A 7,500-seat arena is opening in nearby Oceanside later this year.

National Football League, National Basketball Association, National Hockey League and Major League Soccer owner Stan Kroenke got involved with the redevelopment of the 48.5-acre San Diego Sports Arena site. There was a thought that with Kroenke being involved in building a new arena that there was a possibility that he could get an NBA or NHL team to come to San Diego through either relocation or expansion. The planned new arena in San Diego will seat only 16,000 people for an NBA game and probably about 1,500 people less for an NHL game and that is not going to cut it with either league. Midway Rising Project Team’s spokesperson Jeff Meyer never even mentioned the NBA or NHL when assessing what events might end up in the arena. “A modern arena will allow us to attract national events, such as the NCAA regional basketball or hockey tournaments, combat sports such as the UFC, or Professional Fighters League, and other exciting opportunities like the Academy of Country Music Awards.”

San Diego officials want to replace the existing arena with a new facility.

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