Ottawa Senators Eye New $900M Arena Amid Funding Controversy

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Michael Andlauer, the owner of the Ottawa Senators, has expressed intentions to move the team to a new arena, despite the expected price tag of $900 million. Andlauer believes that the relocation must make economic sense for everyone involved, not just being a result of whimsical daydreams tethered to spare pocket change.

A guest on TSN 1200 this past Monday, he was queried whether his consortium would personally foot the hefty bill for a new ice rink. His response was rather equivocal, admitting that he was unsure of what steps would be required to make the undertaking viable.

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Andlauer highlights the success of Edmonton’s Rogers Place, a prime example of a public-private partnership, splitting costs between the Katz Group, contributions from the City, and a ticket surcharge. This funding model allowed the city to gather its share of $226 million through new parking revenues, a community revitalization levy, and redirecting subsidies.

Andlauer took reigns of the Senators on Friday, emphasizing his readiness to come up with a plan to move the team from Kanata closer to the heart of the city. It’s a change that’s been long-discussed and desired by several parties – the fans, the team itself, the National Capital Commission (NCC) which owns LeBreton Flats, where they believe the Senators will eventually settle, and even the city’s mayor.

However, the issue of funding continues to be a sticking point. Public sentiment is against employing taxpayer dollars to construct an NHL arena. While Mayor Sutcliffe hasn’t discounted using city funds for a new arena, he has suggested looking beyond LeBreton Flats. Ontario Premier Doug Ford remains ambivalent about provincial funding, while NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman has reassured that he has not pressurized Sutcliffe for public funding in their previous meeting.

The Senators warmed up to their pre-season with a well-deserved 3-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs. As they embark on this new chapter, we at the West Island Blog are excited to follow their journey, offering you updates and insights into Ottawa’s favorite hockey team.

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