Though more details are emerging about the Las Vegas NHL expansion franchise, one question that remains unanswered in the status of the team’s proposed practice facility. While the new training center—which reflects new trends as both a player amenity and fan destination—looks to be a go, area officials and owner Bill Foley are still working to find a site.
Back in April, it was reported that Foley had settled on a location on Far Hills Avenue, west of the I-215 Beltway in Summerlin. At the time, it was reported that Foley had arrived at this site for the proposed 105,000 square facility through a deal with the Howard Hughes Corporation.
However, the latest reports indicate that Foley is looking elsewhere in Summerlin, a master-planned community in the western valley. The location that was discussed in April was within Las Vegas’ city limits, but it looks as though Foley is now considering a parcel on the other side of the Clark County line. More from the Las Vegas Review-Journal:
Las Vegas officials had been actively talking to Foley about the Far Hills site but said they heard Foley’s organization decided to switch gears and look at Summerlin property outside city limits.
Little other information about practice facility plans was available Monday, in advance of an expansion vote Wednesday by the NHL Board of Governors.
Clark County spokesman Erik Pappa said in an email that no records have been submitted to the county related to a proposed NHL practice facility. He deferred comment to Foley’s organization.
Foley said more information would be available after Wednesday’s vote.
Wherever the facility is located, it should bring about some interesting features. The concept that has been discussed most frequently calls for a venue that would feature two ice rinks, but could be expanded to four. It would be equipped with a 20,000 square-foot locker room, plus a training facility, office space for team officials, and a video room.
Along with modern amenities for the team, the plans have also incorporated features that have fans and the Las Vegas community in mind. Both practice rinks would come with small sections of seating that allowed for roughly 600 spectators. In addition, the facility would feature smaller locker rooms that would be used by community teams. Plans have also called for concession facilities and a team store.
One of the key components of the plan has been to ensure that the rinks could be utilized on off days by area high school hockey teams. This proposal is actually very similar to others that are taking shape around the NHL, including in Detroit, where a multiuse practice facility at Little Caesars Arena would be used by the Red Wings and the Detroit community. The Chicago Blackhawks have also broken ground on a new, $50 million practice facility that will host youth and amateur hockey events.
Thus far, Foley’s proposal has gathered a fair amount of political support. For starters, officials are keen on the idea of building the facility in a multipurpose fashion that would serve local youth hockey. Another plus is that Foley has previously proposed financing the facility through private funds. Estimates in April put the facility’s cost at $17 million, though it remains to be seen if that is the final price tag.
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