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City of Calgary, Flames agree to terms for new arena project

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The city of Calgary, Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation, and Calgary Exhibition and Stampede Limited agreed to fundamental terms and conditions for the development and construction of a new public sports and entertainment event center, the city announced Monday.

The event center would serve as a new home for the Flames, who've played at the Scotiabank Saddledome since 1983. The facility would also house the WHL's Calgary Hitmen and the NLL's Calgary Roughnecks. The Saddledome is the third-oldest building in the NHL, behind Madison Square Garden and Nassau Coliseum.

The estimated cost of the event center is $550 million, which will be split 50/50 between the city and the team. The city will own 100 percent of the event center. The team will bear 100 percent of the operating, maintenance, and repair costs for the duration of the 35-year agreement.

Construction would begin in 2021 and take approximately three years to complete.

Here's an artist's conceptual rendering of the project:

"City building is a long and challenging process. CSEC is proud to work with the city, Calgary Exhibition and Stampede, and (the Calgary Municipal Land Corporation) to build a lasting legacy and vibrant new district for the citizens of Calgary and all those who visit our city," said CSEC vice-chairman Ken King. "As an integral part of the Culture and Entertainment District, the new event center will be a point of pride for everyone."

The event center would be located adjacent to the downtown core in East Victoria Park.

The agreement is subject to a vote of Calgary's city council on July 29, a seven-day public comment period, and customary approvals by the CSEC and the Stampede.

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