As ballots are expected to be mailed out April 16th, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman attended a press conference to show his support for Propositions 301, 302, and 303 to build a new Tempe Sports and Entertainment District. The project would create more than $690 million in economic benefits to the City of Tempe. It includes new restaurants and retail, a theater, multi-family housing, and a new arena for the Arizona Coyotes. And Tempe residents won’t have to pay for it.
Bettman said, “The arena and accompanying development is one of the most compelling plans I have seen for an NHL team and its community. Alex Meruelo and his development team are taking on the responsibilities that are historically borne by the public. This is a great opportunity, not just for the Coyotes, but for Tempe and Arizona. We are excited about the future with the creation of this mix-use sports and entertainment district. As an essential element of this project, the Coyotes have agreed to sign a binding non-relocation agreement. These undertakings and the efforts and financial commitments of the Meruelo family and the Coyotes make it crystal clear that they are absolutely and permanently committed to Tempe.”
Commissioner Bettman was joined by former Coyotes Captain and current Chief Hockey Development Officer Shane Doan, Coyotes President and CEO Xavier A. Gutierrez, Tempe Councilmember Berdetta Hodge, and Community Leader Tim O’Neal.
Doan said, “I was proud to play for the Coyotes and I’m proud to work for them today, helping the next generation of hockey players on and off the ice. I came to Arizona to play hockey, but I stayed because it’s my home where I have built a life, raised my family, and have been embraced by this incredible community. A yes vote on Props 301, 302 and 303 isn’t just a vote for the Coyotes, it’s a vote for our community. It’s a vote for cleaning up an old landfill and creating a landmark that will benefit not only Tempe but the entire Valley.”
The plan was unanimously approved by the Tempe City Council and sent to the voters.
Councilwoman Hodge expressed her support and said, “When you vote don’t forget to do the real research and don’t listen to the loudest voice. Listen to the correct voice.”
The project is said to create 6,900 permanent jobs for the City of Tempe, and generate an extra $215 million in tax revenue over 30 years for things such as social services, public safety, and housing.
The group was joined by business leaders, labor unions, and community members from all walks of life who are rallying in support of this plan.
Ballots on Props 301, 302, and 303 will be mailed April 19 and must be returned by May 16.