Reno Group Eyes Hockey As Way To Revitalize Events Center

Sep 20, 2016

The city of Reno is getting closer to bringing a professional minor league hockey team to town. Reno Public Radio’s Noah Glick reports.

During last week’s city council meeting, the council voted unanimously to enter into an exclusive negotiating agreement among the city, the Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority and Reno Puck Club, LLC.

The purpose of the agreement is to hammer out details about how Reno Puck Club can bring a professional minor league hockey team to town. But it also is about giving the company operational control over the Reno Events Center.

Bill Dunne is the revitalization manager for the City of Reno. He says this agreement is the first step in helping to lift up a part of town that needs it.

“I think this is an opportunity really, in addition to bringing hockey in, is to breathe new life into a facility that is really underperforming," Dunne says. "It’s an opportunity to bring more people downtown for events, and really help revitalize a corner that needs some TLC.”

Part of the Reno Puck Club’s responsibilities under a proposed plan would include fundraising for a new ice sheet, boards, additional seating at the facility—which is estimated to cost more than $5 million.

The company hopes to have a plan in place and begin work on the facility in January, in order to begin play by next fall.