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The Toronto Maple Leafs offically moved out of Maple Leaf Gardens February 13 and moved in to the new Air Canada Centre on February 20 of 1999.
CONSTRUCTION MILESTONES
Jan 1998 - Jun 1998: Arena Roof.
May 1998 - Aug 1998: Building Enclosure.
Mar 1998 - Jan 1999: Interior Finishes.
Feb 1999: - Air Canada Centre Grand Opening.
Feb 20,1999: - Canadiens vs.Toronto Maple Leafs
Feb 21,1999: -  Vancouver Grizzlies vs.Toronto Raptors
AIR CANADA CENTER (1999-Present) 40 Bay Street - Toronto, ON, Canada

Date Built: 1999
Constuction Cost: 265 Million(CAN $)
Normal Capasity Seating: 18,800
Extended Capasity Seating: 19,500
(including 1,500 fans in 150 Suites and 300 in Standing Room)
Luxury Suites: 40 Platinum Lounges,
65 Executive Suites, 32 Balcony Suites,
16 Loge Suites, 2nd and 3rd level lodge Premium Seats, Three group sales areas including a 200-seat gondola
Location: 40 Bay Street, Suite 400, Toronto, Ontario M5J 2X2

Owner: Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Ltd. (MLSEL)
Size: 665,000 square foot sports and entertainment complex

Office Tower: 140,000 square foot, 12-storey office tower houses MLSEL offices, Air Canada corporate offices and National Hockey League offices.

The Neighbourhood: Located in the heart of the city, Air Canada Centre is close to the CN Tower, the theatre district, restaurants, 15 major hotels, shopping, and two main transportation arteries: the Gardiner Expressway and Union Station that services the Toronto Transit Commission and GO Transit system. The facility has revitalized the area known as the Railway Lands East.

Air Canada Centre provides an excellent link between the downtown core and Harbourfront, one of Toronto's major tourist attractions.

Home Teams:

Toronto Maple Leafs of the National Hockey League (NHL)

Toronto Raptors Basketball Club of the National Basketball Association (NBA)

Toronto Rock Lacrosse of the National Lacrosse League (NLL)

Groundbreaking: February 1997

Opening Hockey Game: February 20, 1999
(Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Montreal Canadiens)

Opening Basketball Game: February 21, 1999
(Toronto Raptors vs. Vancouver Grizzlies)

Seating Capacity:

Basketball 19,800 seats
Hockey 18,800 seats
Full house concerts 19,800 seats
Theatre 5,200 seats

Featuring:

1020 Club Seats

40 Platinum Lounges (unique to a North American venue)

65 Executive Suites

32 Theatre Suites

16 Loge Suites (2nd and 3rd level loges)

Three Group Sales Areas, including a 200-seat gondola
Seats throughout the facility are 19" and 20" and fully upholstered.

Seat Distance: (direct line of sight in basketball mode)
Sideline to last seat upper deck: 165ft (50.29m)
Baseline to last seat 3rd balcony: 167ft (50.90m)

Accessibility: The arena is user-friendly, providing one per cent of fixed seating for the disabled and their companions. Accessible seating areas are strategically located throughout the building, providing maximum flexibility and pricing selection. Among other features, all public washrooms are wheelchair accessible with accommodating counter heights and lower urinals with grab bars. Food and beverage service counters are lowered to accessible service heights.

Arena Usage: Basketball, hockey, arena football, lacrosse, concerts, family shows, skating events, corporate trade shows, circuses, and various sporting and community events and private functions.

The Theatre at Air Canada Centre: Air Canada Centre houses the largest theatre in Toronto. The Theatre is a self-contained 5,200-seat theatre that fills an important niche in Toronto's theatre marketplace. The Theatre attracts medium-sized concerts and family shows that are better presented in an intimate setting.

Restaurants: Themed concession stands, unique restaurants and kiosks offer a diverse food and beverage program, capturing the multicultural flavour of Toronto. The venue boasts three restaurants: the Air Canada Club, with a view of the arena, the Platinum Club, for fine dining, and the Hot Stove Club, a tradition transferred from Maple Leaf Gardens, as well as two bars and a Molson brewery within the facility.
Facts About The Air Canada Center  Toronto's theatre of sports and entertainment:
The Maple Leafs won there first game February 20th 1999, by defeating the Montreal Canadiens 3-2 in OT. Todd Warriner was the first player to ever score a goal in the Air Canada Centre. The goal happened at 6:04 of the first period with Markov, and D. King getting the assists.

The Air Canada Centre, located right in the downtown core, will be a world-class sports and entertainment facility and will be the premier arena for professional hockey and basketball in North America.

Designed with the fans in mind, the focus is on intimacy and customer experience. The seating capacity for hockey will be 19,500 (including 1,500 fans in 150 Suites and 300 in Standing Room) with excellent sight-lines throughout.

The facility houses a club restaurant and bar with a view of the ice. There will be televisions throughout the building, including all washrooms. One percent of seating in the building has been designed for the disabled, offering physically-challenged individuals a choice of various ticket prices.

The Air Canada Centre will have all of the characteristics of a first-class, technology-advanced facility while maintaining the spirit and legend associated with that of Maple Leaf Gardens.
In-House Brewery: Air Canada Centre is one of only two sports arenas in Canada to house a Rickards Brewhouse. Rickard's Red, Gold and Pale are brewed on site and served right here in Air Canada Centre.

Parking and Transportation: There are over 13,000 parking spaces within immediate walking distance of the arena. In addition, the arena is just a two-minute walk from the Union Station with the GO Transit system of commuter trains as well as Toronto's world-renowned TTC subway system.

Technology: Air Canada Centre showcases the best in-arena audiovisual technology. The acoustic system supplied by Bose System is valued at $1.2 million.

Sony Jumbotron: The Sony LED wide-screen Jumbotron made its Canadian debut at Air Canada Centre, featuring four state-of-the-art wide-screens and message board. The scoreboard incorporates Sony's high-resolution audio/visual screens. More than 700 Sony televisions are situated throughout the arena.

Bell Media Centre: The Bell Media Centre, located on event level of Air Canada Centre, is a top-of-the-line facility providing up-to-the-minute sports and news information available through seven separate Bell ExpressVu TV satellite feeds. These feeds feature access to sports, news, and events from around the world; up-to-the-minute Sports Ticker; computer and high-speed Internet access with on-line statistical information, all supplied by Bell ActiMedia; and voice and data connections.

Ice Rink Conversion Time: Four to six hours, from basketball mode to full hockey set-up.

Ice Surface Quality: Ice rink meets all professional safety standards suitable for professional hockey, figure skating, and mass audience ice shows. At the end of the regular 2001-02 hockey season, it was ranked among the best ice surfaces in the National Hockey League.

Ice rink measures: 85' by 200'

Ice Making Technology:
Refrigeration Plant: CIMCO Lewis System Purification: Jet Ice
Dasher Board System: Ice Pro System
Ice Surface Management: Two Zambonis, stored-in-house
Hockey Surface Sub-Contractor: CIMCO Lewis Ice System

Signage Considerations:
Rotating (30-second intervals) signage synchronized with scoreboard, 200 level, and fixed dasher board signage.

Nike Flight Deck, the Raptors practice facility: One of nine teams in the NBA to have their own practice court built in the arena (Washington, Phoenix, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Atlanta, Indiana, and Minnesota). Features include an NBA-size regulation court, training facility, and a scoreboard complete with shot clocks on both basketball nets.

Television Broadcast: Air Canada Centre staff worked closely with Dome Productions, CBC and other broadcasters to ensure that Air Canada Centre's broadcast capabilities would meet world-class standards for broadcast.

Galleria: Running in an east-west direction, just south of the GO train tracks, the Galleria is a public thoroughfare located at the north end of Air Canada Centre. It is a covered, climate-controlled walkway that houses the ticket office, food court and Centre Sports retail shop. In addition, a historical display of artifacts from the original Canada Post Delivery Building and its site is a prominent feature. Nearly 60 per cent of guests enter Air Canada Centre through Gate 1, located in the Galleria.

PATH Walkway System: Air Canada Centre is connected to the well-known PATH system, providing covered access to the downtown core. PATH reaches as far north as Dundas Street. Two grade-level connections, referred to as the Bay West Teamway and the Blue Route provide convenient access from Union Station to the Galleria, a climate-controlled public square with retailing and food opportunities.

Family Fan Considerations: Air Canada Centre is considerate of fans of all ages. There are baby change tables in all washrooms, as well as smaller urinals for children.

The arena's accessibility from major public transportation arteries makes it fan-friendly to families.

Multiple location ATM machines, phones and water fountains are located throughout the facility.
Various views of the Air Canada Center, and game day crowd.
Air Canada Center:  See Also: