A rush job holding back information.
It appears Calgary elected officials have figured out how to build an arena that will please the owners of the National Hockey League Calgary Flames franchise. Flames owners have been pushing the city to fund a building for years. There is still a way to go before there is a shovel ready to put into the ground but it has been suggested that the new building will cost $550 million Canadian which is less than the Seattle arena rebuild and the planned New York Islanders arena. Flames ownership wants a revenue generating arena but need to get some public loonies from the city to subsidize the building’s project cost. The team continues to use the city owned Saddledome which opened in 1983 and lacks all of the revenue producing gadgets newer buildings offer. If all goes according to plan, the arena will open in 2024.
In September, 2017, the Flames ownership threw in the towel and decided to walk away from Calgary elected officials and said they were going back to the old arena and that was it. Of course, in sports no owner ever walks away from the table stomping his or her feet and says I am not talking to you about you spending money for my factory ever again. In April, 2017, Flames Chief Executive Officer Ken King expressed unhappiness with local elected officials’ refusing to help fund the Calgary Next project. Then Flames President of Hockey Operations Brian Burke said that the team would be gone without a new building and even suggested a possible landing spot, Quebec City. King immediately contradicted Burke saying Burke was not the organization’s arena negotiating mouthpiece. But King and Burke were reading off the same script. “There would be no threat to move, we would just move,” King said. “And it would be over. And I’m trying my level best to make sure that day never comes, frankly.” No never means no in the stadium game.