HALIFAX - The Halifax Metro Centre may be no more – in name only, that is.
© Metro Halifax/Andrew Rankin
The Halifax Metro Centre in the city's downtown core could soon have a new name.
Halifax regional council will be presented with a staff report during Tuesday’s meeting calling for them to work with Trade Centre Limited on naming rights for the 35-year-old facility.
If agreed to, the Metro Centre could be under a new corporate name by the fall of 2014. It’s believed the naming rights could bring in as much as $500,000 annually for the facility that’s currently home to the Halifax Mooseheads and most major concerts and events in the city.
“In order for HMC to continue to be appropriate for event delivery and provide quality service to customers, certain areas of the HMC require significant refurbishment and updating,” states the staff report. “As owners of HMC, this refurbishment will require a significant capital investment by HRM. As a result, staff has been exploring options to best address this need.”
If council gives the go-ahead, a public request for proposals would be issued to gauge interest, although the staff report says financial institutions, telecom companies, and alcohol companies are the ones to likely step forward.
The report specifically asks council not to block alcohol companies from making proposals “to maximize the value received for HMC naming rights.”
Naming rights for arenas are nothing new in Canada. Most major indoor and outdoor stadiums are now named after companies, including the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, the Air Canada Centre in Toronto and Rogers Arena in Vancouver.
The HRM staff report says the Metro Centre needs upgrades in the $6 million range. That includes $2.3 million for the replacement of seating, $2 million for a new centre-ice clock, $1 million for expansion to washroom facilities and $1.2 million for a new ice slab.
“For the (Halifax Metro Centre), naming rights provide a very good opportunity to help fund improvements,” the staff report reads.
- by Philip Croucher - Metro Halifax