Sales tax referendum for Braemar Arena expansion heading to Edina voters

Residents of Edina will decide this fall whether or not to use sales tax revenue to expand Braemar Arena.

This week, the Edina City Council approved a referendum for this November’s election that will ask voters whether or not to use collections from the half-percent sales tax increase approved last year to expand the arena and finish other major improvements at the facility.

If approved, the sales tax rate wouldn’t change or be extended beyond the 19 years it’s already authorized for, but the south rink at Braemar Arena would be demolished so two new ice rinks could be built — resulting in four total indoor rinks and one outdoor rink. The city says other upgrades would include a safer drop-off and pick-up area, a new, larger lobby and more parking space.

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“These investments will provide better accessibility, more ice time for skating enthusiasts and a better overall experience that residents told us they want,” Edina Parks and Recreation Director Perry Vetter said.

The $25.3 million project is the second part of a $64.6 million planned investment that started last year. More information on the project is available online.

Braemar Arena hosts around half a million visitors each year, making it one of the busiest ice arenas in the state.