The Charlotte City Council voted 10-1 Monday to approve $16 million in renovations to Bojangles’ Coliseum, which includes $4 million specifically for the Charlotte Checkers minor-league hockey team.
The Checkers will move to Bojangles’ from Time Warner Cable Arena for the 2015-16 season. The city plans to install ice-making equipment for the building, replace the seats and install a new scoreboard, among other improvements.
The money for the renovations will come from the city’s hotel/motel occupancy taxes and a tax on prepared food and beverages.
This is the city’s first subsidy for the Checkers. Council member Kenny Smith voted no.
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The city has said the arena and neighboring Ovens Auditorium lose about $500,000 a year. The city has said that the Checkers will pay the city rent, allowing Charlotte to recoup its $4 million after about 7 years.
The city had previously planned to spend $12 million upgrading the 1950s-era building.
Charlotte hopes to partner with a developer to build an amateur sports complex and hotel on the parking lot next to the Coliseum. But the developer, Florida-based GoodSports, hasn’t been able to secure financing yet.
The city said Monday it has about $40 million in debt capacity left in its Convention Center fund, which will fund the Bojangles’ renovations. After the renovations, the city will have about $24 million left.