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Sacred Heart University set for ‘game-changing’ new arena

Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut has detailed plans to build a new $60m (£45.8m/€54.4m) ice hockey and skating arena, which is slated for completion in 2022.

The facility, which will have a capacity of around 4,000, will serve as the home of SHU’s Division I men’s and women’s hockey programmes, as well as its figure skating team and men’s club ice hockey team.

The arena will feature a pro shop, beer gardens, food venues, suites, meeting rooms and offices, with construction work to begin in the summer. The arena, which SHU’s executive director of athletics described as a “game-changer” for the university, will also host special events including guest lectures, concerts, convocations and other activities.

Jim Barquinero, SHU’s senior vice-president of enrolment, student affairs and athletics, said: “This arena will be the Division I intercollegiate skating crown jewel and a standout facility in the Northeast. In addition to providing a sophisticated and beautiful home venue for our teams, it will serve our entire university community and residents throughout the region. It truly is the culmination of many years of athletic excellence by all our former hockey players – men and women – who have donned the Pioneer jersey.”

Michael Kinney, the university’s senior vice-president for finance, added: “The arena will be engineered to the highest standards, with enormous attention to detail and quality involving the design of locker and training rooms, spectator space and the rink itself. It will include broadcast facilities and a wide range of complementary amenities.”

The arena is being designed by architectural firm ALG of North Dakota and the S/L/A/M Collaborative of Glastonbury. The venue will be located on SHU’s West Campus.

Image: Sacred Heart University