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Blackhawks' Community Ice Rink Approved by City Council

By Ted Cox | February 10, 2016 11:50am
 The proposed interior of the Blackhawks' practice facility.
The proposed interior of the Blackhawks' practice facility.
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Chicago Blackhawks

CITY HALL — The City Council signed off Wednesday on the Blackhawks' new community practice rink on the Near West Side.

The council formally approved zoning changes that clear the way for the Hawks to begin construction on the $50 million structure, which will include two rinks, one for the Hawks to practice on, and will be open to the public 90 percent of the time, according to Hawks Chairman Rocky Wirtz.

The Plan Commission signed off on the project last month.

The Hawks will use the rink for practice, but also expect the facility to help increase interest in hockey in the city. The team has established deals with Chicago Public Schools and the Park District to provide free equipment and ice time to young players.

Wirtz and Mayor Rahm Emanuel first announced plans to place the practice facility at Malcolm X last summer.

It's expected to be completed late next year.

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