Comment 55369

By Shempatolla (registered) - website | Posted January 10, 2011 at 12:53:10


Well written although I disagree with your premise. Here's why.

First of all, I believe a smaller stadium has the potential to attract far more users and events across a broader spectrum that what currently takes place at IWS. This would include tournaments from soccer to lacrosse, rugby, etc. Concerts, expos, festivals, the possibility of outdoor film screenings... the possibilities are numerous.

The suggestion that Scott Park is some kind of anchor for sport, particularly high level sport are from days gone by I believe. Additionally I feel that the IWS precinct holds far more value to the city if it were redeveloped residential/commercial.

I believe there is a misconception of what is meant by a scalable stadium. This is not a temporary facility with removable bleachers. Rather a permanent facility built with modular principles and built with the intent/option/possibility of adding further modules to increase both seating capacity and amenities. It also allows for temporary erection of seats in support of larger events. Again this is not a collection of metal bleachers.

The fact that the Tiger Cats under their current management have delivered their "we will never play at WH" ultimatum is actually liberating for the city. It gives us the freedom to design the facility with other things than just CFL foot ball in mind. (BTW if the Tiger Cats are adamant that they will never again play in Hamilton after 2011 why has the notion of them negotiating another lease at IWS through 2014 been floated?)

While the Rheem site is in the Harbour district, it is not connected yet to Bay Front Park or the pier network. A pedestrian promenade over the tracks could certainly change that and link a new Stadium/Velodrome/residential precinct with both the downtown and waterfront.

The north south leg of LRT proposed for James St could encompass a spur/loop across Barton up Queen to York back to James.

My thought is that properly done a Stadium/Velodrome/ complex designed around community use, with the ability to grow to accomodate pro soccer, maybe foot ball can become an anchor for community growth and prosperity. Think of an arena complex. In use 7 days a week, by hockey teams, figure skating etc. They generate a hub of economic activity around them. Restraunts, stores, hotel/motel, etc.

The fact that this opportunity is generating such debate is only a good thing.

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