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Roof Retracted: Whatever Happened to Plans For a New Syracuse Arena?

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A year after it sounded like Syracuse was building a new arena, those plans have basically been back-burnered in perpetuity.

Hey, remember when Syracuse University was getting a brand-new, $495M, 44,000-capacity arena with a retractable roof? No? Neither does the city of Syracuse because the entire episode appears to have been washed away and lost forever (or at least until the Governor earmarks money for the city). Via the D.O.:

After the proposal hit a stalemate, talks have died down and the future of the Carrier Dome remains unclear. Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner formed a task force to look into the logistics of how a new stadium would operate, and SU Chancellor Kent Syverud formed a workgroup to explore the future of the Dome’s roof and the Dome itself.

Syracuse Common Councilors and SU Athletics personnel, as well as with those with direct knowledge of the situation, said there have not been any talks about a new stadium to their knowledge. "I think there was an opportunity last year that the governor and the county executive presented and because the mayor said ‘No, I’m not interested,’ it went no further," said Syracuse Common Councilor Kathleen Joy.

I said at the time that it all sounded a little too pipe-dreamy and that the entire saga would end with the Carrier Dome getting renovated and that's basically what's happening. Not that Syracuse University wasn't serious about the new arena, I think they were. But they probably knew that worst case scenario, the arena could act as a kind-of hairy arm meant to make Carrier Dome renovations more palatable. Considering that, one way or another, the Dome needs to be renovated or replaced, it just makes sense to focus efforts there.

It's still possible that a new-and-improved arena is in Syracuse, NY's future. But it certainly doesn't appear to be anytime soon. Long live the Carrier Dome, until it doesn't.