Skip to content

Scottsdale mayor slams Coyotes' new arena plans: 'Not feasible'

Via X/@ArizonaCoyotes

Scottsdale mayor David Ortega directly opposes the Arizona Coyotes' plans to purchase a plot of land in North Phoenix that would house a new arena and entertainment district.

"The prospect of a rookie developer attempting to buy Arizona State Trust Land with absolutely no infrastructure ... at the doorstep of Scottsdale is not feasible, or welcome," he wrote in the Arizona Digital Free Press.

Ortega added that the Coyotes' "fantasy" renderings for the new arena, released last week, were "presented without mention of market demand for a new entertainment venue disguised as a hockey arena, or congested highway access, or questionable arena-zoning entitlement."

The organization is eyeing a 95-acre stretch of land within Phoenix's city limits, but it encroaches on the border of Scottsdale. The tract will be up for auction in late June with a starting price tag of $68.5 million.

The Coyotes announced their commitment to win the land auction last Thursday.

"Arizona is our home, and an incredible market where the Coyotes belong," team owner Alex Meruelo said in a statement. "This district would provide a beautiful home for the Arizona Coyotes for decades to come. Our loyal fans deserve this vibrant gathering place that would serve as a landmark to create lifelong memories."

The proposed arena would have 17,000 fixed seats, while the district itself would feature a new practice facility, a live music theater, retail and dining spaces, and just under 2,000 luxury residential units.

Ortega noted that the retail aspects of the Coyotes' plans would be "too close to the retail lions of Scottsdale." The mayor added that his city's water assets "are absolutely not available" for the proposed project.

This is the latest thorn in the side of the franchise's attempt to find a new home. The Coyotes' hopes of building an arena in Tempe were dashed last May after residents voted against building a $2.1-billion entertainment district in the area.

"As a Scottsdale councilman in 2000 and now as mayor, I have seen the inside dealings when the Coyotes suddenly left Scottsdale in 2002, and recently as they vacated their former home ice in Glendale in 2022," Ortega said.

The Coyotes are in the midst of their second season at Mullett Arena, a 5,000-seat venue at Arizona State University.

Daily Newsletter

Get the latest trending sports news daily in your inbox