Blackhawks Are Getting A New Practice Facility Open To The Public
By Margaret Paulson in News on Jul 30, 2015 7:55PM
Mayor Rahm Emanuel is set to announce an agreement with the Blackhawks for a new training facility and community ice rink on the West Side where Malcolm X College is currently located. The site, which is located just south of the United Center, was chosen after Malcolm X College announced plans to move to a new campus next year.
The facility will measure 125,000-square feet and include two ice rinks, which Hawks chairman Rocky Wirtz has envisioned as a sort of community center to help grow hockey fans, train kids to skate at a young age, and cement Chicago as a true hockey city.
"We'd have 95 percent for the public. If we design this right for all practical purposes, it's a community rink the Hawks would practice in occasionally," Wirtz told the Tribune.
On the heels of its 2015 Stanley Cup win, the Hawks’ third in six years, Wirtz also made a bid to bring the World Junior Championships to Chicago in 2018, which will be bolstered by the brand new facility. According to Second City Hockey, the World Junior Championship features the world’s top junior players, many of whom end up playing in the NHL.
Wirtz called it “the biggest hockey event” next to the Olympics. Chicago is one of five finalists, and the winner will be announced at the end of the year.
The new facility is set to open in three years, with construction to begin next year.