With no plans on the horizon to repurpose the facility, city council has voted to demolish the arena that once housed the Edmonton Oilers.
Whether you know it as Northlands, Skyreach Centre, or Rexall Place, the arena that was home to the Edmonton Oilers for over three decades will soon be torn down, or at least it’s certainly looking that way. Councillor, Tony Caterina, raised a motion on Friday to hold off on the decision for 60 to 90 days to see if any developers would be willing to step forward with plans to breathe new life into the old building but that was soon shot down. Other counsellors, as well as Mayor Don Iveson, believe that it would be best to save the city some money and that the land would be better served being redeveloped into something else entirely.
Back in December, an estimate came in that priced the demolition of the old barn at $15-25 million dollars whereas keeping it open would, in itself, cost the city upwards of $15 million per year in maintenance and upkeep. With no future plans on the horizon, would keeping it standing really make sense? In February, a vote approved the permanent closure of the facility. Looking ahead, it has been recommended by some members of city council that they take a year to develop new plans or concepts on what to do with the land and site of the Oilers’ former home.