The Nashville Predators are exploring putting a practice facility with community ice rinks in Bellevue, which would be the hockey franchise’s second outpost after the Ford Ice Center in Antioch.
“They’re looking at multiple options,” Metro Councilman Sheri Weiner said. “They’ve always wanted be in Bellevue. They’re just looking for the right site.”
The effort comes amid strong local interest in adding sheets of ice around Nashville. The A-Game Sportsplex youth sports facility's closing in Franklin nearly three months ago left only a pair each at Centennial Sportsplex and the Ford Ice Center available to the community.
Bellevue was in contention when Antioch was chosen for the Ford Ice Center. Now multiple sites are being explored in that West Nashville community with conversations underway with the Metro planning staff about conceptual plans.
Nashville Predators spokesman Gerry Helper said the NHL team is open and willing to talk with any party about adding ice facilities across Middle Tennessee.
“For youth and adult hockey to continue to grow, it requires more ice,” he said. “We can never have too many ice facilities.”
People gather during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Ford Ice Center in Antioch on Sept. 12, 2014. (Photo: File / The Tennessean)
The Predators practice at Centennial ...