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NHL Officials Want To See More Development Around ESA

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RALEIGH — The Carolina Hurricanes' season is over, but anotherbattle is just beginning at the Entertainment and Sports Arena. The NHLwants more development around the arena.

Steve Stroud, Arena Authority chairman and owner of a commercial realestate company, supports development near the arena, but he admits nearby fields and woods are just potential sites.The NHL wants a five-star hotel nearbybefore the All-Star game could come to the ESA.

"You could build a five-star hotelthere and actually tie it into the arena andCarter-Finley Stadium and have direct accessto the fairgrounds," he said.

N.C. State owns the tract between the arenaand Wade Avenue. A developer would have to negotiate with the universityto get a hotel project going, but arena development is coming in smalldoses.

"There's going to be a fast food restaurantthat's going to beconstructed. There is also going to be a suite hotelconcept that's going on the larger site," Stroud says.

Stroud thinks land like the DOT lot atBlue Ridge Road and Hillsborough Street willincrease in value, urging the state to sell.

"I thinkhigh-density residential, high-density office wouldbe ideal for that," he says.

The Colorado Convention Center had plenty of roomfor this year's NHL All-Star Fantasy event. Stroud thinks the existing group ofbuildings at the fairgrounds could handle thecompanion All-Star game.

 Credits

Mark Roberts, Reporter
Keith Baker, Photographer
Kamal Wallace, Web Editor

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