An article in today's Spec draws attention to the fact that 2,500 parking spots are now enough for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, when they needed at least 6,000 spots at the East Mountain.
Without the benefit of the business analysis the Ticats said they'd provide on the West Harbour, I can only guess as to why 2,500 spots are now acceptable (so much for the "driveway-to-driveway experience"); but it suggests their earlier opposition had more to do with opportunism than desperation - that they took a gamble they could scare Council into giving them a much better deal.
With the exception of highway visibility, the CP Rail Yard site is worse than the West Harbour for the criteria the Ticats claimed made West Harbour untenable: accessibility, parking, proximity to residential neighbours.
The fact that the Ticats are at the table tells us they can't afford not to close some kind of a deal. The difference for the city is that this mutually face-saving compromise location will cost the taxpayers tens of millions of dollars more while providing almost none of the city-building benefits the West Harbour would have provided.
The good news, at least for our sitting Councillors, is that they probably won't have to make a decision until after the October 25 election.
Gary Lunn, the Federal Minister of State for Sport, told City Manager Chris Murray that the private sector needs to contribute more money to close the stadium funding gap, and that he will ask HostCo CEO Ian Troop to give Hamilton more time to put the funding together.
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