Teams in Washington, Wizards and Capitals, agree to new deal to stay in D.C. after relocation to Virginia is canceled, report says

Alexandria, Virginia announced the end of negotiations to bring the NHL’s Washington Capitals and the NBA’s Washington Wizards to the city along with a proposal to create a development district with a new arena for the two teams. However, the proposal will not move forward due to an incentive plan offered by Governor Glenn Youngkin that was blocked by lawmakers in the state’s General Assembly. The city expressed disappointment in the outcome, as they believed that Potomac Yard Entertainment District opportunity was worth considering.

In contrast, reports indicate that after Alexandria’s announcement, Washington Wizards and D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser were finalizing a deal to keep the teams in Washington at their current home of Capital One Arena until 2050. The city plans to provide $515 million to modernize the existing arena. This decision contradicts previous plans by Ted Leonsis to move both teams to a new home in Alexandria as part of a $2.2 billion mixed-use development project.

The city of Alexandria engaged in substantial community engagement over the past few months to inform negotiations and improve their proposal for residents. Despite their efforts, they were disappointed by the outcome between Governor Youngkin and lawmakers in the General Assembly, but remain committed to pursuing economic opportunities that improve their quality of life and economic health.

Governor Youngkin has blamed personal and political agendas for driving away Alexandria’s project, highlighting one of many challenges faced when balancing economic development with political interests during negotiations.

By Sophia Gonzalez

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