MnSCU Board of Trustees authorizes Bemidji State University to pursue final lease with City of Bemidji for proposed Bemidji Regional Events Center

BEMIDJI, Minn. — The Board of Trustees of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system today voted to authorize Bemidji State University to move forward with its negotiations with the City of Bemidji on a lease agreement for the proposed Bemidji Regional Events Center.

Under the terms of a lease agreement, Bemidji State will become the anchor tenant for the events center, which is scheduled to open in January 2011. A lease agreement will make the regional events center the home of Bemidji State’s NCAA Division I men’s and women’s ice hockey programs. The Bemidji State men’s ice hockey program is a member of College Hockey America, while its women’s program competes in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association.

Bemidji State University and the City of Bemidji entered into a memorandum of understanding earlier this year that outlined the terms and conditions required before entering into a formal lease agreement. Under the agreement, the events center would provide the University with a 4,000-seat arena, which would include no less than 25 private luxury suites and 250 club-level seats.

Once finalized, terms of the lease are subject to approval by the Bemidji City Council and the MnSCU chancellor or his designee.

The MnSCU Board of Trustees must approve all contracts, including real estate leases, with a value greater than $2 million. Bemidji State University’s 20-year lease with the City of Bemidji is expected to be valued at approximately $4.5 million over the term of the lease.