Maple Leaf Gardens
Toronto, ON, CA ~ August 19, 2008

Incredibly, a decent number of historic ice hockey arenas survived into the 1990s. The Montreal Forum (substantially renovated), Chicago Stadium, Boston Gardens, the St. Louis Arena, and the Auditorium in Buffalo (undergoing abatement / demolition in late 2008) joined Toronto's Maple Leaf Gardens among of the great old arenas that endured almost into the 21st century, before being replaced by larger and more profitable buildings. As a piece of architecture, it may be so that Maple Leaf Gardens doesn't look all that different from government offices (as a friend of mine suggested); perhaps it is better appreciated when viewed from a raised elevation. As place to watch hockey and immerse oneself in history, it still trumps whatever arena the Maple Leafs are playing in now. The highest seats in the old arenas were much clsoer to the playing surface than in the new rinks. 

Vacant since early 1999, plans have been presented recently for a grocery market to operate in what would be the gutted shell of Maple Leaf gardens, but that plan seems to be stalled as of late 2008.






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