MasterCard Centre

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MasterCard Centre for Hockey Excellence
Lakeshore Arena
MasterCard Centre logo.jpg
Full name MasterCard Centre for Hockey Excellence
Location 400 Kipling Avenue
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
M8V 3L1
Coordinates 43°36′13″N 79°31′12″W / 43.603485°N 79.52011°W / 43.603485; -79.52011
Owner City of Toronto
Capacity Rink 1 - 1,000
Rink 2,3,4 - 200
Field size (1) 200' x 100' and (3) 200' x 85'
Opened September 8, 2009[2]
Construction cost $44 million[1]
Toronto Maple Leafs (practice facility)
Toronto Marlies (practice facility)
Toronto Furies (CWHL)
Hockey Hall of Fame
Hockey Canada
NHL Alumni Association
Etobicoke Dolphins
Journey to Excel
101 Sports Group
Zuperior Sports Store
Etobicoke Sports Hall of Fame

The MasterCard Centre for Hockey Excellence or commonly the MasterCard Centre is a hockey facility located in the Etobicoke district of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It has four ice pads and is the official practice facility of the Toronto Maple Leafs NHL hockey team, and their AHL affiliate the Toronto Marlies. The building also houses offices for Hockey Canada and the Hockey Hall of Fame and is home to the Toronto Furies of the Canadian Women's Hockey League. The land is owned by the Toronto District School Board as 400 Kipling Avenue.


The MasterCard Centre was built as a joint venture between the Toronto Maple Leafs, the City of Toronto and the Lakeshore Lions Club at a cost of $44 million, after cost overruns drove up the cost from $33.65 million,[1][3][4] to replace the nearby Lakeshore Lions Arena.[2] The Lions Club contributed $40 million to the project, with the city providing a $35.5 million loan guarantee.[3][4][5][6] The Toronto District School Board leased the land for the arena to the Lakeshore Lions for a 50-year term.[5] Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE) spent a further $5 million on training and medical facilities to make the building the practice rink of their two hockey teams, the Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Marlies.[2][7] The Toronto Maple Leafs Hockey School is also held at the arena.[8] MLSE pays $600,000 annually to rent the building.[2][7] MasterCard purchased the naming rights to the facility for $525,000 a year.[6]

The facility, which is located at 400 Kipling Avenue in the New Toronto neighbourhood of Toronto, opened in September 2009.[7] It has four NHL-sized rinks, one of which can be expanded to Olympic dimensions with 1000 seats, as well as extensive training facilities.[7][8][9] According to MasterCard, the arena is "the first community ice facility to be built in the Toronto-area in the last 25 years."[8]

The arena was originally operated by the Lakeshore Lions Club,[8] but in June 2011, with the arena unable to deal with its rising debt and on the verge of defaulting, the City of Toronto decided to take control and assume its $43.4 million debt.[3][4][5][10][11] The arena had planned to have a restaurant and sporting goods store at the facility, but were unable to find a tenant leading to the financial difficulties.[1][4][6]

The city established the Lakeshore Arena Corporation, an arms-length corporation, on September 8, 2011 to take over the running of the arena, with the intention to return it to private management within 2–3 years.[1][3][5][10][12] A city councillor suggested that MLSE, which operates BMO Field and Ricoh Coliseum on behalf of the city, would be "the logical party" to take over the arena, and a spokesperson for the company said "while we don’t have any interest in purchasing the facility, we are open to discussing the possibility of managing the facility on behalf of the City of Toronto.[1] MLSE's executive vice president of venues and entertainment Bob Hunter said they would bid for the right to run the building.[6] After the arena's original loans expired and it was unable to find refinancing, the city provided a short term loan. In November 2015, after finding that the debt was unsustainable, the city voted to write off $8.1 million of the $40 million it was owed by the arena.[13]

The arena is used by Hockey Canada for its national teams,[8] as well as by numerous visiting National Hockey League teams.[12] The NHL Alumni Association is also based at the MasterCard Centre.[5]

The rink is also available for ice rentals by the public for Leagues, tournaments, private rentals and special events. The Faustina Hockey Club offers both community House League and Select Hockey programs at the MasterCard Centre. On Saturdays from September through June MasterCard provides open, free ice skating for families. In 2011, it was the host venue for the third season of the CBC reality figure skating competition Battle of the Blades,[10] and subsequently hosted the fourth season in 2013.

The venue hosted an international short track competition for the first time in November 2015.[14]

D.K. (Doc) Seaman Hockey Resource Centre[edit]

Doc Seaman, a part owner of the Calgary Flames died on January 11, 2009 after a long battle with prostate cancer. In his honour, the Hockey Hall of Fame has named its new $4 million archive and resource centre at the MasterCard Centre the D.K. (Doc) Seaman Hockey Resource Centre.[7][15] The Hockey Hall of Fame maintains an archive of historical items, their research and archival department.[8] The facility replaces the archive and research library at the main Hockey Hall of Fame building in downtown Toronto. The space is shared with Hockey Canada.


  1. ^ a b c d e Moloney, Paul (June 13, 2011). "City poised to take over arena's $40 million debt". Toronto Star. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d Hornby, Lance (September 8, 2009). "Leafs open 'Cadillac' of practice facilities". Toronto Sun. Retrieved May 6, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c d Levy, Sue-Ann (June 20, 2011). "Toronto's $449-million loan groan". Toronto Sun. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d Levy, Sue-Ann (June 11, 2011). "Rink stink". Toronto Sun. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c d e Church, Elizabeth (June 13, 2011). "Toronto taxpayers on hook as Lakeshore arena runs out of cash". Globe and Mail. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  6. ^ a b c d Doolittle, Robyn (June 25, 2011). "What went wrong with Etobicoke's state-of-the-art arena?". Toronto Star. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  7. ^ a b c d e "Leafs New Practice Rink Unveiled On Tuesday". Toronto Maple Leafs. September 8, 2009. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  8. ^ a b c d e f "Leafs, Marlies, Lakeshore Lions Club Team up with MasterCard To Foster Hockey Excellence". MasterCard. August 19, 2009. Retrieved January 6, 2004. 
  9. ^ "The New 4-Pad". Lakeshore Arena Corporation. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  10. ^ a b c "Annual Report 2011" (PDF). Lakeshore Arena Corporation. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  11. ^ Peat, Don (June 20, 2011). "Bailout for Lakeshore Lions arena approved". Toronto Sun. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b "RE: Lakeshore Arena Corporation 2012 Audited Financial Statements and Annual Report of the Board of Directors" (PDF). Lakeshore Arena Corporation. March 31, 2013. Retrieved January 6, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Adjustments to Various Direct City Loans" (PDF). City of Toronto. 2015-10-05. Retrieved 2015-11-08. 
  14. ^ "Home News & Info News Historical first for Toronto which will hold the ISU Short Track Speed Skating World Cup #2 on November 6-8, 2015". Speed Skating Canada. 28 May 2015. Retrieved 1 November 2015. Toronto will host for the very first time an international speed skating competition this fall, as the best short track speed skaters in the world will meet at the MasterCard Centre, November 6–8, 2015, for the second ISU Short Track World Cup of the 2015-2016 season.  External link in |website= (help)
  15. ^ "Daryl Kenneth "Doc" Seaman". Hockey Hall of Fame. Archived from the original on December 3, 2010. Retrieved December 3, 2010. 

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