The future of the NHL’s Arizona Coyotes is unclear after a public vote went against a proposed Tempe Sports and Entertainment district that would have kept the team in the East Valley city.

The privately funded $2.1 billion project, first proposed in September 2021, included a 16,000-seat arena, a practice rink, two hotels, retail shops, 1,600 apartments, a theatre and a sportsbook. 

The Coyotes estimated the district would generate $13.1 billion of new spending on site (an average of more than $435 million over 30 years).

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement: 

The National Hockey League is terribly disappointed by the results of the public referendum regarding the Coyotes' arena project in Tempe. We are going to review with the Coyotes what the options might be going forward.

On the ballot were propositions 301, 302, and 303, which would have removed an unlined landfill next to Tempe Town Lake and replace it with the sports and entertainment district.

Coyotes president and CEO Xavier A. Gutierrez said:

We are very disappointed Tempe voters did not approve Propositions 301, 302, and 303. As Tempe Mayor Corey Woods said, it was the best sports deal in Arizona history. 

The Coyotes wish to thank everyone who supported our efforts and voted yes. So many community leaders stepped up and became our advocates and for that we are truly grateful. We also wish to thank the countless volunteers who worked so hard to try and make the Tempe Entertainment District a reality and the Tempe City Council for their support as well. While we wanted a different outcome, we remain grateful to all those who volunteered their time and talent.

What is next for the franchise will be evaluated by our owners and the National Hockey League over the coming weeks.

The Coyotes played their home games at Mullett Arena on the campus of Arizona State University this season. They had played at Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona, since 2003 before the city ended its lease with the team after the 2021-22 season.