SBD/12/Facilities Venues

AMERICA WEST TO UNDERGO RENOVATION DESPITE COYOTES THREATS

          The city of Phoenix unveiled a plan to give America
     West Arena a $12M upgrade, making it "one of the biggest
     hockey arenas in the NHL," although the Coyotes may still
     relocate to Scottsdale, according to Chris Fiscus of the
     ARIZONA REPUBLIC.  The renovation, which could be completed
     "by the end of summer 2000," would give the arena 17,500
     seats with "clear views for hockey and arena football."  In
     addition to the remaining 2,500 "or so 'obstructed-view'"
     seats, America West's capacity would increase to over
     20,000.  The arena currently holds 16,210 for hockey --
     though less than 12,000 offer unobstructed views -- and
     19,023 for basketball, seating that would "remain
     essentially the same."  Also, the Coyotes would receive
     access to all suites for their home games beginning in the
     2000-01 season.  Seven existing suites are currently
     unavailable to the team.  Phoenix Mayor Skip Rimsza said
     that the $12M could be paid from existing arena funds,
     although the use of those funds and the renovation plan must
     still be approved by the Phoenix City Council.  City
     officials said the city would still go through with the
     renovations despite the Coyotes' insistence on relocating to
     a new facility in Scottsdale (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 3/12).

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Facilities, NHL, Arizona Coyotes

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