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New rail stop = new Red Wings arena site?

Detroit Red WingsThere’s only one reason to add a stop at Temple Street on Detroit’s proposed Woodward Avenue light-rail project: to bring fans to and from a new Detroit Red Wings (NHL) arena.

There’s been no official announcement of a new-arena site; indeed, Red Wings ownership is pretty cagey about the whole idea of a new arena.

But reading the tea leaves — as Crain’s Detroit did here — there’s little other reason to place a light-rail stop at a relatively abandoned location; sure, there are some condos in the area, but the area is mostly made up of vacant lots. The abundance of land has made the area a rumored site of a new Red Wings arena for years once.

Delve deeper into the light-rail background and there’s more circumstantial evidence for a new arena. A group named M1 Rail has been working with the Detroit Department of Transportation on the light-rail plan and had considerable input into the stops on the line, which will run from downtown Detroit nine miles along Woodward Avenue. A prominent member of M-1 Rail? Mike Ilitch.

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