The Jacksonville City Council has approved a naming-rights deal for Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena, which will become VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena.
As was revealed last month, the city was exploring a potential sale of naming rights to Jacksonville-based VyStar Credit Union. The proposed 15-year, $9.76 million corporate naming-rights partnership–the first for a venue that originally opened in 2003–was pending the approval of the Jacksonville City Council.
On Tuesday, the city council approved the agreement as part of a unanimous 19-0 vote. The Veterans Memorial Arena component of the venue’s name will remain in place, making the facility officially known as VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena. More from the Florida Times-Union:
City Council President Aaron Bowman, who is a Navy veteran, said the agreement provides a dedicated source of yearly funding for veterans program while also generating money the city can use to keep the arena in good shape.
“The planets had to align for me to ever think this was a good idea, and those planets are aligned in my eyes,” Bowman said.
He said VyStar is the right company for the agreement because the company was founded to serve military members and already is a strong supporter of programs for service members and veterans.
The unanimous vote came after some veterans called on City Council to increase the share of revenue from the naming-rights agreement that will go toward veterans programs, a move that would have reduced what the city gets from the agreement for upkeep of the arena.
VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena is currently home to several teams, including hockey’s Jacksonville Icemen (ECHL), and used for events such as concerts and more. It will be in the national spotlight soon, as it is among the venues that will host March Madness action later this month.
Rendering of VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena signage on the facility courtesy City of Jacksonville.
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