Venue News & Notes: Outdoor Hockey To Come to Beantown

The NHL’s popular outdoor game will continue its tour de nostalgia in 2010. The annual Winter Classic will be hosted by the Boston Bruins this winter, bringing the game to Fenway Park, according to NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman’s office. However, according to a source familiar with the negotiations, if contractual details can’t be worked out at Fenway, the game might be at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, home to the New England Patriots.

The Bruins, lobbying for months to bring the NHL’s Winter Classic to Boston, have been given the go-ahead by Commissioner Gary Bettman’s office to host the game Jan. 1, 2010, despite mild, perfunctory protestations from Causeway Street that plans for the popular New Year’s Day game have yet to be finalized. Pending a last-second hiccup, the game will be staged at the nearly century-old Fenway Park, with its iconic Green Monster serving as the backdrop to the boards, Plexiglas, and 85- by 200-ft. sheet of ice…

…RFK Stadium in Washington and FedEx Field in Landover, MD, are among 70 U.S. stadiums that could host soccer’s World Cup in 2018 or 2022, the USA Bid Committee said this week. Also on the list are three Houston-area venues: Reliant Stadium and Rice Stadium in Houston and Texas A&M’s Kyle Field in College Station. The committee mailed letters last week to public officials and stadium operators in metropolitan markets across the U.S. in a first step toward preparing a formal bid to play host to the FIFA World Cup in 2018 or 2022. Candidate markets and venues have until April 17 to reply to the committee. The list of venues will be trimmed to about 25 before the bid is submitted…

…A proposed bailout for Indianapolis’s pro-sports stadiums would not only double state liquor taxes but also allow the capital city to siphon away $6 million a year in state sales tax. State leaders repeatedly have rejected similar financing ideas for Northwest Indiana projects…

…Wednesday’s exhibition game was the Baltimore Orioles’ final in 2009 at Fort Lauderdale Stadium, and it’s still not official whether they’ll be back in 2010 and beyond. The search for a new spring-training facility has become a never-ending saga of fits, starts, flirtations, rejections, and complications. Although some club officials are optimistic that a long-term solution is coming, there’s no concrete indication of when…

…Philips Arena, home to the Atlanta Thrashers, announced this week that it has achieved LEED for Existing Building: Operations and Maintenance certification as specified by the U.S. Green Building Council. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) represents independent, third-party verification that Philips Arena has met green-building operating standards and performance measures. Philips Arena is the first NBA or NHL arena to achieve LEED certification for an existing facility…

…The city of Diamond Bar, CA, has unanimously approved a legal settlement that grants it more than $21 million in exchange for dropping objections to a professional-football stadium in a neighboring city. City Council members approved the agreement Tuesday night with the City of Industry, which approved plans for the $800 million venue in February. The settlement includes $20 million to deal with increased traffic from the stadium and $1 million for a middle school athletic field.

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