HAMILTON — Jim Balsillie has unveiled his vision for a revamped Copps Coliseum that would be home to a third Ontario NHL franchise.
Balsillie’s plans for the arena feature an atrium-style entrance lobby, luxury boxes, lounges and restaurants, new seats and a state-of-the art video scoreboard. The arena would seat up to 18,000 spectators.
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The BlackBerry boss has made a US$212.5-million bid for the Phoenix Coyotes on the condition he can move the club to Hamilton.
The NHL is against the move and instead wants to find a buyer who will keep the team in Glendale, Ariz.
Balsillie’s Copps reno would cost upwards of $150 million.
Earlier this month, Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty left the door open to using public funds for the project but said he would have to wait and see Balsillie’s proposal.
Copps Coliseum opened in 1985 and currently seats 19,000, depending on the configuration.