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Phantoms New Arena In Allentown Won't Open Until 2014, According To Report

The $234 million hockey arena being built in Allentown will not be ready for the 2013-14 season as delays in construction will push back the completion date, according to a report by The Morning Call.

Citing documents used to sell bonds to prospective investors, the outlet is reporting the projected completion date is listed as some time after Aug. 1, 2014.

Via The Morning Call:

"The Arena is scheduled to open for the 2014 hockey season," according to a statement on Page 7 of documents drawn up to attract buyers for the bond sale.

The Philadelphia Flyers American Hockey League affiliate is the expected tenant of the building.

Originally formed as the Philadelphia Phantoms, the club relocated to Glen Falls, New York, when the team’s home, the Wachovia Spectrum, was demolished to make way for the Xfinity Live complex.

In 2011, it was announced that the club would be returning to Pennsylvania and would play their home contests at the new Allentown complex beginning in the 2013-14 season.

However, it appears that date will have to be amended.

State Rep. Jennifer Mann, a member of the Allentown Neighborhood Improvement Zone Development Authority that is overseeing the arena project, stated that she doesn’t believe the 8,500-seat complex will be ready prior to the 2014-15 season and that rushing to meet the unrealistic 2013 deadline could inflate costs.

"I would be very surprised if that building was ready this time next year," Mann said. "I don't know that anybody has quite been willing to say that formally, but I think all signs point to 2014.

"It's pretty apparent the 2013 season was a stretch regardless," Mann said. "Then when you throw in the litigation and the delay there, that was an additional stress. The reality is we need to make sure we are doing this properly."

According to the Phantoms ticket office, the club is still preparing to play in Allentown in 2013.

The club has been in contact with a reported 2,000 potential buyers interested in season tickets and the club has already sold hundreds of season ticket packages that require buyers to commit to three-years as well as place a $100 deposit per ticket.

"People are excited. Interest is high," said Erik Hansen, Phantoms vice president of ticket sales. "We're still selling season tickets for 2013 until someone tells us otherwise. We are telling people that they will not be charged for any games that aren't played on Hamilton Street."

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