New Halifax Mooseheads owner teases ‘a lot of changes’ for Scotiabank Centre

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Halifax Mooseheads owners stop by Global News Morning
Halifax Mooseheads owner Sam Simon and Peter Simon stop by to talk hockey as the Moose are in the midst of a tight series with the Quebec Remparts in the Gilles Courteau Trophy Finals. – May 17, 2023

The new majority owner of the Halifax Mooseheads says big changes could be coming to the Scotiabank Centre in the next couple of years.

“We’ve been working on the big plan for the next two, three years – what this should look like,” Sam Simon said Wednesday during an appearance on Global News Morning, as the team is in the midst of a tight series with the Quebec Remparts in the Gilles Courteau Trophy Finals.

Simon, an American businessman and investor, became the majority owner of the Mooseheads in February. He founded sports investment firm Simon Sports with his son Peter last year and said shortly after the Mooseheads sale that it was “always a dream” to own a sports franchise.

On Wednesday, Simon told Global’s Paul Brothers that he hired an architect to look at what can be done at the Mooseheads’ home arena, which opened in the late 1970s.

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“There’s a lot of areas that we need to change … The concession needs help, I got people telling me that we need more than one elevator,” he said, adding that the locker rooms at the centre could also use an upgrade.

“There’s going to be changes. You’re going to see a lot of changes.”

Sam Simon says a lot of changes are coming to the Scotiabank Centre, formerly known as the Halifax Metro Centre. The venue opened to the public in 1978. Lee Brown/The Canadian Press

Simon said he met with Halifax Mayor Mike Savage to discuss his ideas, which a spokesperson for Savage’s office confirmed in an email.

“The Mayor did meet with them and they shared their general desire to invest in the team and the facility, but no detailed plans or timeline,” the email said.

Erin Esiyok-Prime, the director of marketing and communications for Events East, which operates the Scotiabank Centre, said in a statement that they are always looking for ways to “enhance the fan experience.”

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“The Mooseheads have identified a number of opportunities to enhance the experience for their fans and the team, including upgrades to their dressing room, and we’re currently working through the details and timelines together,” she said.

Esiyok-Prime said the Scotiabank Centre is focused on developing a long-term vision for the venue, which includes identifying improvements to fan experience and infrastructure that would be implemented over several years.

She noted that they are redesigning the centre’s in-venue digital signage, including a digital advertising ring, concourse digital signage and a new public address system.

Sam Simon became the majority owner of the Halifax Mooseheads in February. Callum Smith/Global News

Simon and his son, Peter, also said big plans are in the works next year, when the Mooseheads celebrate their 30th anniversary.

“There’s going to be a lot of good stuff happening,” said Simon.

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“We have some special things planned for merchandise and jerseys, and just making sure that we celebrate the 30-year history of the team, and making sure that we involve the fans as well,” Peter added.

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