Friday stadium news: Warriors subway delays, MLS expansion scuttlebutt, ungrateful Hamilton

Oh hey, yeah, I forgot to mention that it’s the most important holiday of the year this week (and part of next), so posting may be a bit sporadic until Wednesday or so. But I could never ignore the weekly news roundup, so let’s get to it:

  • San Francisco’s new Central Subway likely won’t open until 2021, more than a year later than planned, which will mean a couple of seasons of Golden State Warriors fans walking or taking shuttle buses. Honestly, it’s not all that far, but I’m sure there will still be complaining.
  • David Beckham got some new minority partners for his MLS team that still doesn’t quite exist yet. Supposedly the league will issue an “update” on the Miami stadium situation soon, which maybe sounds ominous only to me because I think that way?
  • The city of Phoenix has now spent $200,000 on a Suns arena consultant, and still the city council doesn’t have any information yet even on what kinds of upgrades the arena might need, because the mayor says he has to keep negotiations with the team secret. From the city council. No, it sounds crazy to me, too.
  • The owner of the Hamilton Bulldogs junior hockey team offered to build a new arena and only ask taxpayers to foot half the bill, and he’s mad that the city hasn’t thanked him yet.
  • Cincinnati’s highway bridges are falling down, but the city is spending money on a new MLS stadium (maybe?) before addressing that, because hotel taxes and other money going to the stadium isn’t allowed to be used on highway infrastructure. You know, maybe cities and counties should start allowing things like hotel taxes to be used to improve other things that benefit tourists, like roads that don’t have overpasses fall on them when you drive under? Just a thought.
  • The Republican tax bill isn’t finalized yet, and we don’t know if the ban on tax-exempt stadium funding will survive, but the Detroit News speculates that if it does, it might help Detroit’s MLS expansion chances because it’s the only city that wouldn’t be building a new stadium. MLS already supposedly voted on the expansion cities yesterday, though, so you think the league owners called Congress for a sneak peek at the final bill? Does MLS have that kind of pull with Congress?

Canada: No arena subsidies if it’s for a pro team

In yet another indication that Canada remains a different country from the U.S., the federal government is threatening to withdraw funding for an amateur hockey rink in Laval, Quebec, because it’s learned that a minor-league pro team might move there:

There are growing rumours that the Hamilton Bulldogs of the American Hockey League — the farm team of the National Hockey League’s Montreal Canadiens — are planning to move into the Laval arena when it will be built.

Ottawa is now warning that it will pull the plug on the project unless if obtains guarantees that the arena will not be used by an AHL or a major-junior hockey team. Otherwise, the government fears that it will be hit with a new round of lobbying for other sports infrastructure projects in cities like Quebec City, Edmonton and Regina.

“If we allow a breach in our policy, we’re toast,” a federal official said.

From the sound of it, part of the reason for the reversal was griping by city officials in Quebec City that the Laval arena was getting federal stimulus money and their own proposed NHL arena (which still isn’t any closer to having a team than when it was approved last year) wasn’t. Still, the concept that giving public money to one team might be a bad idea because it will encourage other teams to ask for it too is a notion that most U.S. officials would likely find … well, foreign.