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Senators Eye Parliament Hill for Heritage Classic

Ottawa Senators

The Ottawa Senators are known to be interested in hosting the 2017 Heritage Classic, but the team has one specific location in mind. 

Rather than focus on an outdoor stadium, the Senators want to bring the December 2017 Heritage Classic to Parliament Hill. Such a decision would require building a temporary facility–including stands–but the Senators are interested to see if the logistics would work.

Having the game on Parliament Hill would create a unique environment, as the game would take place in the midst of the Gothic-style buildings that occupy the parliament grounds. It would also signify a celebration of significant anniversaries for both Canada (150th) and the Senators (25th).

At this point, it seems that the Senators interest in Parliament Hill is so strong that other venues are not being studied. That includes TD Place Stadium, the home of the CFL’s Ottawa Redblacks. More from the National Post:

The Senators met with government officials in August to discuss the logistics — including security — on the Hill. While Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson has indicated he’d like an answer this month, that may not happen.

The sense was if the Hill wasn’t possible with a pop-up stadium of 30,000 to 40,000 seats, then TD Place would be the backup plan, because the game would come on the heels of the 2017 Grey Cup being held in Ottawa. Senators owner Eugene Melnyk wants to see the backdrop of Parliament Hill with the Peace Tower in the background for an outdoor game.

“It’s not an easy fix, but people are genuinely working on trying to get that done,” [team president Cyril] Leeder said. “There is an effort place to see that through.

“(TD Place) is not an option we’ve looked at, at all, in any detail, and we’ve been really focused on the Hill.”

If a game on Parliament Hill were to happen, the Senators would be the first NHL team to host a Heritage Classic in a temporary venue. Past venues include Edmonton’s Commonwealth Stadium, Calgary’s McMahon Stadium, and Vancouver’s BC Place. This fall’s Heritage Classic will take place at Winnipeg’s Investors Group Field.

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