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Flames to break ground on new $800M arena in ’24

Ten days before the 40th anniversary of the Saddledome opening, the Calgary Flames announced on Thursday that they have finalized an agreement with the City of Calgary, the Calgary Stampede and the Alberta provincial government to build a new arena.

Construction is slated to begin next year on the new arena adjacent to the Saddledome, which will cost $800 million Canadian and is expected to be ready for the 2026-27 season.

As part of the new arena deal, the Flames have a 35-year commitment to remain in Calgary. Renderings of the arena haven’t been made available, and there’s no timeline for those to be revealed.

Along with the new arena, the $1.22 billion project includes a community rink, additional parking, street-level enhancements around the building, and transportation and infrastructure improvements in the area.

The Flames will be on the hook for $356 million. The Alberta provincial government will put up $330 million, while the City of Calgary ($537 million) will cover the rest of the costs, including any overruns.

Once the new arena — which will seat 18,000 to 18,400 fans — is finished, the 19,289-seat Saddledome will be demolished.

According to Alberta transportation minister Devin Dreeshen, the government’s contribution will also go toward improving infrastructure around the new arena and help fund the community rink.

The Saddledome, which has been the Flames’ home since Oct. 15, 1983, also hosted multiple events at the 1988 Winter Olympics. Last renovated in 1994 at a cost of $37 million, it’s also the NHL’s second-oldest arena, trailing only Madison Square Garden, which opened in 1968.

–Field Level Media

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