With apparent progress being made on the downtown LeBreton Flats development featuring a new Ottawa Senators arena, owner Eugene Melnyk is optimistic about the team staying in Canada’s capital.
Melnyk met with reporters after a briefing with Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson, where he outlined the current state of financing and development for the LeBreton Flats development, which will include housing and more — all privately financed. From Sportsnet.ca:
From a financial perspective, Melnyk made it clear that the team won’t be seeking any funds from the city.
“We are fully capable of funding our portion of what we need to accomplish. I think that, as a team effort here, everything that is required can get done,” Melnyk told reporters, adding that he’s “very confident” about the future of the downtown arena development.
“Some hurdles that have to be overcome, we look at that as challenges as opposed to obstacles,” Melnyk added. “And with the mayor’s leadership here, I have more confidence today than ever. So I’m very confident this is going to go forward.”
Despite some rumors in recent month that Melnyk was considering dropping the LeBreton Flats development and selling the team, his public statements reaffirmed his commitment to the project. The next step is to submit a formal application to the city outlining the specifics of the project, which will eventually be voted on by the Ottawa City Council, and working with the National Capital Commission (NCC) on a final agreement.
The Senators currently play at Canadian Tire Centre in suburban Kanata.
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