TEMPE, Arizona (AP) – Tempe City Council has voted to negotiate with Arizona Coyotes for a proposed nearly $ 2 billion development that would include a new arena for the franchise.
The council voted 5-2 in favor after a seven-hour meeting Thursday night that included comments from more than 100 citizens and the reading of more than 220 written statements.
The Coyotes held a lengthy presentation on a 46-acre plot of land west of downtown Tempe that will include an arena, hotels, shopping malls, offices and housing. Former Coyote captain Shane Doan and three current players also spoke during the meeting.
Officials at Sky Harbor Airport have expressed concern about the housing component because the land is 9,800 feet from the end of one of the runways. They did not oppose the arena’s proposal, but said the soundproofing would not be effective enough, as more than 1,000 housing units are directly below the flight path.
NHL Commissioner Gary Batman said via video call that he approved the plan without reservation, but said a 30-year non-transfer agreement would be needed.
The Coyotes have been on annual lease at the Gila River Arena since the city of Glendale voted to cancel a 15-year $ 225 million lease in 2015. Glendale decided not to renew the lease after the 2021-22 season, and the Coyotes have found a temporary home in Arizona’s new 5,000-seat arena starting next season.
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