Voters Decline to Move Tempe Entertainment District Forward

An Arizona Coyotes hockey arena, hotels, apartments, restaurants and retail will not move forward at Priest Drive and Rio Salado Parkway now that residents have voted to decline the Tempe Entertainment District.

Tempe voters have spoken and we respect their voices. The Tempe City Council’s unanimous vote in November 2022 to move the Tempe Entertainment District forward, after months of due diligence and negotiations, showed their enthusiasm for this project and our belief that it was in the best interests of the community. Enough residents did not share our view and the Council, in a statement, accepts this result.

The statement read, “The Arizona Coyotes have been good partners in this effort. We believe Alex Meruelo, Xavier Gutierrez and the whole organization have put forward their best for our community and for this proposal. We are grateful for the resounding community support from past Mayors and City Councils, from the Tempe Chamber of Commerce, Tempe Tourism, the Black Chamber of Arizona and so many more. It’s time to move forward. Above all, we as Tempe residents are neighbors and friends who can determine where we will go next. This fall we will offer public input opportunities to begin creating a path forward for this important property.”

Arizona Coyotes President and CEO Xavier A. Gutierrez issued a statement in response to the results of the special election in Tempe late last night saying, “We are very disappointed Tempe voters did not approve Propositions 301, 302, and 303. As Tempe Mayor Corey Woods said, it was the best sports deal in Arizona history. The Coyotes wish to thank everyone who supported our efforts and voted yes. So many community leaders stepped up and became our advocates and for that we are truly grateful. We also wish to thank the countless volunteers who worked so hard to try and make the Tempe Entertainment District a reality and the Tempe City Council for their support as well. While we wanted a different outcome, we remain grateful to all those who volunteered their time and talent. What is next for the franchise will be evaluated by our owners and the National Hockey League over the coming weeks.”

As of 8:00p.m. election night, the Maricopa County Elections Department released its first count of votes for the three propositions on the ballot:

Proposition 301: 16,193 No (56%); 12,738 Yes (44%)
Proposition 302: 15,681 No (56%); 12,208 Yes (44%)
Proposition 303: 15,981 No (57%); 12,004 Yes (43%)
Votes: 29,153 votes cast. 32.55% turnout.

“Tonight I am grateful for all the community members who got engaged and expressed their views about the Tempe Entertainment District at the ballot box,” said Mayor Corey Woods. This is why we as a City Council were determined to put these matters before voters so they could have their say. As Tempeans, we are united in our passion for this amazing city and I believe we will move forward together.”

For election results, visit Maricopa County Elections.

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