City Council Approves Deal To Keep Islanders Hockey Farm Team, Upgrade Arena

From Brian Lockhart, CT Post:

After five years and over $615,000 in legal bills, the City Council Wednesday made peace with the Bridgeport Islanders, approving a settlement that will keep the hockey team–formerly known as the Sound Tigers–in town for another decade and upgrade the aged arena the players call home.

As part of the deal, the city committed to spending up to $28 million to return the arena to like-new condition.

“I’m grateful for those members supporting this,” Councilman Jorge Cruz, whose represents the harbor front where the city-owned, Islanders-managed sports and entertainment arena is located, said before the 13-4 vote held over teleconference. “I support this 100 percent.”

Members of the legislative body from other neighborhoods made the case that the venue and the hockey games and other events held there have benefited the entire community for two decades and will now be joined by the just-opened, warm-weather concert amphitheater next door to provide a year-round destination.

Full story here.



  1. Thanks again Joe!… if it was built right from the beginning, and not thrown up quickly just to get Joe his cut,we could of used that money elsewhere..Joe is the gift that keeps on giving..

  2. The voters in this Republican primary need to remember that Ethan Book is not only a Donald Trump supporter but Ethan was at the January 6th insurrection to stop vote by force with those white supremacists. All one has to do is to read Ethan Book’s statements on Only In Bridgeport.

  3. I must say that I agree with Councilwoman Maria Pereira, who was one of the “no” votes. Pereira, who represents a northern part of town near the Trumbull and Stratford borders, had wanted the city to produce a cost-benefit analysis of the arena. She claimed Wednesday that “it has done nothing to generate revenue to reduce the tax burden on residential homeowners and renters.” I also agree with
    Councilwoman Eneida Martinez who also opposed the settlement, but for a different reason. Martinez argued that even as Bridgeport is committing $28 million to the arena and gave Saffan $12 million toward the amphitheater, another municipal-owned, privately run attraction — Wonderland of Ice — is languishing.

    The rinks have been operated for three decades by Lisa Fedick and in 2018 the city renewed that arrangement for 20 years. But, Martinez told her colleagues, Bridgeport has not done enough to improve the facility or to help Fedick recover from lost business due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    “Wonderland of Ice has been neglected by the city,” Martinez said. “Here we are in our third meeting negotiating deals for the … arena when Wonderland of Ice has a lot of kids that attend a lot of different sporting activities and I don’t see the city going above and beyond.”

  4. Ron
    The problem with the cost / benefit analysis is that some are clearly definable hard cost but the rest are soft or intangible dollar amounts.
    For example how long would the area a be empty if the Sound Tigers left and how much would that hurt economic development as a whole?
    An independent economist could come up with certain guesstimates but they would all be subject to second guessing.

  5. I do believe that your second comment is worthwhile about Wonderland of Ice.
    What I don’t understand is why wasn’t that included in the form of a motion to require the city to set aside some dollars for future enhancements.

  6. Or someone could have asked for a breakdown of attendance per game or revenue generated to determine if they should keep them. What kills me is that they approve 28 million with very little deliberating like it grows free yet the city always cries broke to fill the education budget deficit.


Leave a Reply