Swiss National League ice hockey club HC Ambrì-Piotta (HCAP) has announced that it expects to begin work on its new arena by the end of the month after finalising details for the project.

The club, which is located in the municipality of Quinto, has called the Valascia arena home since it opened in 1959. The 6,500-capacity venue has a novel design as its ends are open to the elements meaning games are partially played outdoors.

Valascia Immobiliare, the company that owns the Ambrì ice rink and whose majority shareholder is HCAP, has said the final elements of the project and its funding have now been agreed allowing for the start of demolition work on the old arena and the excavation of foundations.

HCAP has said it needs a new arena to cope with the ever-increasing demands of competing in the best league in Europe, while its existing home is also deemed an avalanche risk. Mario Botta is the architect behind the new arena, which will be a multi-purpose venue designed for use all year round.

The project, which has been financed by private donors and has already obtained building permits, will cost around CHF50m (£38.2m/€44.5m/$50m), almost half of which will be provided through public funds.

Images: Valascia Immobiliare