Arena Name: Colisée de Laval Capacity: 3,500 Built: 1955 Address: 1110 ave. Desnoyers, Laval, QC, H7C 1Y5 Last Game: 2003 Ice Surface Size: Regulation
Colisée de Laval
What's the Arena Like?
The Laval National/Voisins/Titan franchise were one of the cornerstones of junior hockey during their period in the Q. While they never won the Memorial Cup, they won four Quebec league titles and produced NHLers such as Mike Bossy, Vincent Damphousse and Mario Lemieux. The Titan packed it in and moved to Bathurst in 1998, but I always figured that based upon their long, successful history in northern Montreal, a return to Laval might be in the cards someday for the Q. But then I visited the Colisée de Laval.
The Colisée is located on the grounds of a community college in an otherwise 1960ish residential neighbourhood. Getting there by car really feels like you're driving through the heart of suburbia, and on back roads, as there are no major routes nearby. And then you see the Colisée for the first time in the middle of a small parking lot within the neighbourhood, and you wonder how on earth the Q survived here for this long.
The Colisée is run-down. It's comparable to the Kingston Memorial Centre for the most run-down building I've been to. Built in 1955, the Colisée looks like it hasn't had even routine maintenance in several years now, and apart from a somewhat modern scoreboard there are no signs of progress. Paint is peeling from all the walls and concrete steps are crumbling inside.
As far as the actual layout of the arena, it's a pretty decent setup overall. The Colisée has a popular setup for Quebec arenas, with a single bowl of red seats and then a blue second tier in each end of the rink. The seats are all uncomfortable wooden slatted models. Underneath one tier is something completely unexpected - a gymnasium. There is also a small lobby with bar and snack concessions just inside the front door.
Some ancient arenas feel like they're just too far gone to really rehabilitate properly. While you could renovate the Colisée de Laval, it's the sort of place that really needs a lot of love to bring it up to even a bare minimum standard. The Laval Titan are history now, and it's a shame that the place that housed them is in such a poor state. The most depressing thing about the Colisée was that there was no sign of the history of the Titan on display, although I suppose I can't really complain about that too much since it's the team's fault. All of the Titan's banners moved with the team and are now on display in Bathurst, New Brunswick.
Inside Colisée de Laval
What's the Arena Used for Today?
Colisée de Laval is no longer the main spectator arena on Île du Jesus, as the 10,000-seat Place Bell opened in 2017 and is home to the Laval Rocket AHL team. The Colisée is still open and currently is home to an LNAH team, the Petroliers du Nord.
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