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Utah lawmakers pass bill for new downtown NBA/NHL arena after last-minute changes

Mar 1, 2024, 10:45 AM | Updated: 3:27 pm

possible new jazz arena shown in rendering of downtown salt lake...

On Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, Jazz owner Ryan Smith tweeted a rendering of a new vision for downtown Salt Lake City. (Twitter.com/RyanQualtrics)

(Twitter.com/RyanQualtrics)

Listen live at 6:35 p.m.: What you need to know about the NBA/NHL arena bill

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah lawmakers have approved a bill that paves the way for a new arena in downtown Salt Lake City that could be the home of the Utah Jazz and a potential National Hockey League team.

Utah senators voted 22-4 Friday to concur with changes that the House of Representatives made to SB272 Thursday night before the House voted 50-20 to approve the measure. The bill now heads to Gov. Spencer Cox’s desk for final approval.

Rep. Jon Hawkins, R-Pleasant Grove, the bill’s House sponsor, introduced a substitution on Thursday that tweaked the name from a reinvestment to a revitalization zone. It also adds new language tied to downtown safety concerns, including new public safety, homelessness mitigation, transportation and parking plans for the zone.

However, Hawkins said changes don’t change the essence of the bill. It still sets up the framework for an NBA or NHL owner — such as Ryan Smith and the Smith Entertainment Group — to approach Salt Lake City and the state and agree to a plan to revitalize the area, including with a new arena for the Utah Jazz and an NHL franchise.

Updates to places like the Salt Palace Convention Center or Abravanel Hall could also be included. All government-related funds would be covered through bonds issued by either by the city, county or state on top of any private funds directed toward investment.

Read the full story on KSL.com

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Utah lawmakers pass bill for new downtown NBA/NHL arena after last-minute changes