Tempe, Arizona (3TV/CBS 5) – The Arizona coyotes need a new home and the team hopes to build one in Tempe. So on Thursday, team leaders submitted a $2.1 billion proposal to Tempe City Council for a state-of-the-art arena and entertainment district. It will be located along Tempe Town Lake, close to Rio Salado Boulevard and Priest Drive.
A special meeting of the Tempe City Council was held to determine if the city wanted to continue working with the team and its developer to bring the project to fruition. Team representatives told council members that the construction would be privately funded and would create about 7,000 new jobs. The project will include a 16,000-seat hockey arena, retail stores, restaurants, a betting shop, hotels, apartments and office space.
Coyotes executives have also released new renderings of the proposed arena. The visualization shows the Tempe arena surrounded by 10 buildings that will be used as hotels, offices or apartments. One of the photos also shows a strip of restaurants near the hotel building.
Representatives from Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport also made a presentation expressing concern that apartments are being built too close to the airport. The proposed location is less than 2 miles from the airstrip at Sky Harbor, and some pilots and airport officials oppose the idea. Some pilots even spoke of residential buildings being built too high and interfering with air traffic.
Dozens of people gathered outside Tempe City Hall to tell council members how they should vote. Some residents of Tempe support the development project, while others do not. Supporters of the proposal say it will create jobs in the area and boost the local economy. However, those who vote against say it will bring in too much traffic and increase the cost of living.
Olympian Lindsey Fry also attended the meeting in her Coyotes jersey and showed her support for the proposal. Shane Doane, chief hockey development officer for the Coyotes, also took the floor to state his position. “We need a place that belongs to us and somewhere where they want us and hopefully we can get here and that’s what works,” Doan said.
Coyotes legend Shane Doane, the team’s chief hockey development officer, spoke at a public hearing about a proposal to build a new arena for the Arizona Coyotes.
Phoenix City says it’s not the arena that’s bothering them. Instead, the apartments being offered are in conflict with their intergovernmental agreement with Tempe. “Building the arena itself is not a problem. It’s clear, we’ve made it perfectly clear. The problem is that there are houses next to the arena,” said J. Kabu, an attorney representing the Phoenix City Aviation Department.
95 people signed up to speak at the rally, but at least a dozen did not show up. A vote to continue discussing the project is expected late Thursday evening. If the council votes in favor, negotiations will continue, but this is not the approval of the project itself. If they vote against, the proposal is rejected.
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