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Quebec City ready to move ahead without federal arena aid

New Quebec arena{jathumbnail off}

With it looking increasingly unlikely the federal government will step in with financial aid for a new Quebec City arena, city and provincial officials say they’re ready to move ahead with a backup financial plan.

No word on exactly what’s entailed with the backup financial plan, though it’s most likely related to an increased contribution from the city. The cost for the 18,000-seat, NHL-quality arena replacing Le Colisee is pegged at $400 million, and the provicial government has already committed $175 million. The city has already pledged $50 million, and we’re expecting that number to go up, along with a sale of naming rights and private investment from area businesses.

The new arena should present an interesting dilemma for the NHL. Commissioner Gary Bettman has aggressively expanded in the American south and west, only to see teams like the Phoenix Coyotes and Atlanta Thrashers flounder. Meanwhile, a revival of the Canadian dollar and economy makes markets like Winnipeg and Quebec City viable.

RELATED STORIES: Harper: No federal funding of arenas — unless Olympics are involved; Backup plan in works for Quebec City arena funding; Fallout from NHL to Quebec City could affect Remparts; Harper backtracks on federal funding of Quebec City arena; Could new Quebec arena open doors for federal spending on arenas? ; Province will pay up to 45 percent of new Quebec City arena; Quebec City on verge of new arena, return of NHL?

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