Well, I guess it all depends on where you stand. People of Quebec City are pretty much all in favor of the project. They still haven't come over the Nordiques departure in 1995. People in Montreal are also divided over the question but most will agree it would be great to have the Nordiques-Habs rivalty back. People outside Quebec are opposed because they fell they are getting nothing out of it. I can understand that.
Anyway, IMHO, it's a false debate and I'd be the first one surprised to ever seeing the arena being built one day on federal public funds. The mayor of Quebec City is playing his cards very well right now and he has Harper backed against the wall exactly were he wants him. But I doubt Harper will agree to this deal and give the money away. Keeping his five conservative deputees he has around the Quebec City region would be nothing compared to alienating the rest of his Canadian electorate.
Personnally, I'd rather see the money go into deficit spending and health care as promised here in the Quebec province by Charest and the Liberals.