this blog entry has been updated
Is Ivor Wynne Stadium being partially or fully rebuilt? It is not yet clear exactly what work will be done as the stadium site is prepared for the 2015 Pan American Games and for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats thereafter.
On Wednesday evening, Hamilton Tiger-Cats owner Bob Young posted a comment on a Ticats Forum discussion that was titled "Ivor Wynne Stadium upgrade" in which he wrote that the plan is not to "upgrade" Ivor Wynne but to "build a brand new stadium" in its place.
Young changed the title of the discussion from "Ivor Wynne Stadium upgrade" to "New PanAm stadium" and wrote:
I had to step in here to fix the title to this thread in order to be very clear: We (the City, the Province, and the Feds, and the Ticats) are not "upgrading" anything. The commitment is to build a brand new stadium on the site of the old Ivor Wynne.
This is news. The plan that Young and Hamilton Mayor Bob Bratina presented to Council in January proposed a partial rebuild: the South Stands would be demolished and rebuilt, while the North Stands would be refurbished. That plan may be changing.
RTH contaced Young for clarification on what this means. In an email response, Young wrote:
Everyone is keen to build the most stadium for the money available. The timing is that IO [Infrastructure Ontario] are in the middle of the process of selecting architects and construction companies. Until those teams have had a chance to analyze the site, and current construction costs, we simply don't know how much can be built for the funds available. But it is clear that $150 million (or so) will build a lot of stadium.
The point I was making on the Ticat forums is that this project is much more than simply an "upgrade" of Hamilton's existing Ivor Wynne stadium.
The Pan Am host corporation is not providing any details either. Carlene Siopis, a spokesperson for Toronto 2015, responded in an email to RTH that the stadium project is "currently in RFQ and there are no details that can be shared."
The City has not had a request to do anything different than was approved by Council when the Ivor Wynne site was approved. There has been no mention of any potential changes at the committee.
RTH contacted Infrastructure Ontario for more details on the RFQ process. In an email response, Terence Foran confirmed that IO is currently undertaking a request for qualifications and added that IO is "not in a position to share further information" until the details have been finalized.
We are still in the request for qualifications stage. Until the request for proposals is issued, we are not in a position to share further information as details have not been finalized. All groups involved in this project – Infrastructure Ontario, TO2015, the City of Hamilton and Tiger-Cats – are having amicable and productive discussions to develop the request for proposals.
Update 1: This blog entry was updated to include a response from Councillor Lloyd Ferguson, which RTH received on the morning of Sunday, July 17. You can jump to the added paragraph.
Update 2: This blog entry originally defined an RFQ as a Request For Quotations, which is normally the practice of inviting contractors to bid on the units of work to be completed. However, as one commenter pointed out, RFQ can also mean Request For Qualifications, in which potential contractors demonstrate that they are qualified to bid on work that has not yet been finalized. RTH is still waiting to hear back from Infrastructure Ontario on the details of the RFQ process underway for the Pan Am Stadium.
Update 3: Infrastructure Ontario responded by email on the morning of Monday, July 18. You can jump to the added paragraph.
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