Sports

Special Stadium Committee of the Whole on Wednesday

By Joey Coleman
Published September 27, 2010

Hamilton City Council will meet in a special Committee of the Whole session on Wednesday to receive an update from city staff about the financial viability of locating a 25,000 seat stadium south of Aberdeen and Longwood.

City Council voted, in committee, September 15 to purpose the current CP rail yard as a site for the Pan Am stadium while continuing to keep the West Harbour site on the table.

The big question that everyone will be looking for staff to answer - will the feds or province provide the additional funds necessary to reach the 25,000 seat threshold for the Tiger-Cats to become anchor tenants in the new stadium?

Mark Masters of the National Post reported last night that Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough-Westdale Liberal MPP Ted McMeekin states the provincial government has not received a request for additional funding for the stadium.

The staff report is not yet filed with the City Clerks office. RTH will bring you the full report as soon as it is available.

Joey Coleman covers Hamilton Civic Affairs.

Read more of his work at The Public Record, or follow him on Twitter @JoeyColeman.

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By jason (registered) | Posted September 27, 2010 at 18:12:31

this is all a waste of time if the Cats and their massive lineup of private business partners who were just itching for a highway location don't show up and actually contribute something....anything....to the project.

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By cityfan (registered) | Posted September 27, 2010 at 21:18:27

Looks like for all of us, we will have to wait and see what's up everyones sleeves.

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By Kevin B (anonymous) | Posted September 27, 2010 at 23:08:16

I have $10 that says any sort of decision is delayed until after e-day.

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By neverwynne (anonymous) | Posted September 28, 2010 at 11:13:47

I have $10 that this giant waste of time and emotions will result in an upgraded Ivor Wynne. Ticats lose, Hamilton loses. Hopefully Young then packs up and leaves.

Mark my words, there will be no new stadia built in Hamilton.
The 'GTHA' PanAms was nothing but a show put on by the McGuinty Gov't. to make the PanAm committee more comfortable with the bid.

Meanwhile, behind the scenes, Toronto has been lining up 'alternative', local 'backup' sites.
Already Moved: Track & Field OUT of Hamilton (along with any hope of a stadium) and into YorkU.
Soccer out of Burlington, soon to be removed from Hamilton. Moved into (already existing) Lamport & BMO Stadiums.
Markham loses Rugby.
Barrie lost its Moto-X event to Ontario Place.

There may be some I missed, but mark my words, they won't be the last to be replaced within Toronto's city limits.

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By highwater (registered) | Posted September 28, 2010 at 11:38:23

Already Moved: Track & Field OUT of Hamilton (along with any hope of a stadium) and into YorkU.

Yup. We lost the stadium when we lost track & field. And all thanks to the cats. They've really shot themselves in the foot.

This will be portrayed as another loss for Hamilton, but I'm not sure if it was ever ours to lose. The real tragedy was not getting the Commonwealth Games, and apparently that was a tragedy for the Commonwealth Games as well.

Comment edited by highwater on 2010-09-28 10:40:50

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By Kevin B (anonymous) | Posted September 28, 2010 at 12:14:06

It's not Bob Young's responsibility to secure the best outcome for Hamilton. That's city council's responsibility and they've failed miserably.

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By realfreeenterpriser (registered) | Posted September 28, 2010 at 13:28:25

"It's not Bob Young's responsibility to secure the best outcome for Hamilton"

You're right, that's what someone who loves Hamilton would do. Oh, but wait, isn't that how "caretaker" Bob Young portrays himself?

In the end, Young had a choice; do something that would give the Tiger-Cats an infinitely better home than they have now and let a revitalized City, that he claims to love, get on with the Pan-American Games or play last-minute, high-stakes poker and try to take the whole pot of public money for himself.(not to mention deep-sixing GO train service and LRT)

Young's behaviour has shown that, despite the self-propagated hype, he's just another in a long line of welfare capitalists trying to leverage public money to private advantage, no matter what the cost.

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By RenaissanceWatcher (registered) | Posted September 28, 2010 at 18:18:15

Here is a City of Hamilton website link to the report to be presented by city manager Chris Murray to Hamilton city council at the Committee of the Whole meeting tomorrow afternoon about funding the Pan Am stadium at the CP rail lands: http://hamilton.ca/NR/rdonlyres/921456FD...

To capsulize the report:

-the Ontario government is willing to commit funds, in an amount not yet specified, beyond its initial Pan Am stadium commitment;

-there is no news yet on whether the federal government will increase its funding commitment but Mr. Murray may be able to update city council at the meeting;

-the Tiger-Cats are willing to purchase part of the CP rail lands for development purposes but will not be contributing to the construction of the stadium or the parking lot;

-the Tiger-Cats are willing to operate the stadium in return for an annual administration fee and they propose that stadium naming rights funds be applied toward the operating costs;

-CP indicated that any negotiations to sell the land would include determining a price per acre plus relocation allowances for its tenants;

A letter dated September 23, 2010 from Hostco CEO Ian Troop is attached as a schedule to Mr. Murray’s report. Hostco wants a series of assurances from the city by tomorrow (September 29th) including: -a letter from the city declaring its stadium site selection; -a letter of intent to sell from CP; -confirmation that the city will pay for the relocation of CP and its tenants; -confirmation that the city will pay for the remediation of the entire property; -a document confirming that the Tiger-Cats agree with the stadium location; - a document from the city outlining a risk assessment of the property; -assurance from the city that the funding shortfall between a 15,000 Pan Am quality and a 25,000 seat CFL quality stadium has been identified.

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By neverwynne (anonymous) | Posted September 28, 2010 at 19:16:39

That's a pretty terrible deal!

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By neverwynne (anonymous) | Posted September 28, 2010 at 19:23:49

Also sad is the fact that, thanks to Bob Young's misguided consultants, this whole mess was actually about the best place to build a Big Box Comple, not a stadium.

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By jason (registered) | Posted September 28, 2010 at 19:27:36

they'd better get ready for an OMB fight of their lives if they think their consultants are going to have any hope of putting in a big box mess over there.

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By realfreeenterpriser (registered) | Posted September 28, 2010 at 23:49:06

"the Tiger-Cats are willing to purchase part of the CP rail lands for development purposes but will not be contributing to the construction of the stadium or the parking lot;

-the Tiger-Cats are willing to operate the stadium in return for an annual administration fee and they propose that stadium naming rights funds be applied toward the operating costs;"

So let me get this straight; the Tiger-Cats have money to pay for lands for development but not for a stadium or parking and they'll operate the stadium that they didn't pay for if we taxpayers pay them to do it and they get the naming rights.

This is such a bad deal that I expect City Council will embrace it.

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By jonathan dalton (registered) | Posted September 29, 2010 at 09:10:44

This is such a bad deal that I expect City Council will embrace it.

I wouldn't even be that cynical (and that says a lot). The East Mountain was rejected exactly because it was a horrible deal. This one is even worse.

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By H+H (registered) - website | Posted September 29, 2010 at 09:41:24

The stated "willingness" of the Ti-Cats is an insult that surely even some of our mouth-breathing Councillors will see? Likely not.

I suspect there will be all kinds of "Kudos to Chris Murray and his team for moving the ball forward." And lots of, "I'm pleased to see that everybody is back at the table.", even though the City bought the table and the Ti-Cats are renting the table back to the City, not to mention charging us for glasses of water consumed by City staff during the negotiations.

This is worse than bad. I'm afraid it's time to move on. Stop wasting staff time and our money on chasing nonsense. This whole thing is like a Polaroid photo in reverse. It started out fully developed and has been fading into nothing ever since. Say no to HostCo. It's time for the Cats to move their litter box to another community. This is not the outcome I wanted, but when the "partners" consistently don't play fair, you get up from the negotiating table and leave, not as theatre, but as a matter of principle.

Comment edited by H+H on 2010-09-29 08:45:29

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By waterboy (anonymous) | Posted September 29, 2010 at 14:19:09

If the Tiger-Cats are willing to purchase part of the CP rail lands for development purposes but will not be contributing to the construction of the stadium or the parking lot...

... as the new property owners will they be expected to get the ball in game by remediating the brownfield / industrial lot they purchased?

The Ministry of the Environment will surely be the fist to applaude Bob Young with a congratulatory Environmental award of some sort; won't they?

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