Open Thread: CalgaryNext Thoughts

Today the Flames are releasing details about their proposed arena/stadium/mixed use project. A private season ticket holder session (occurring presently) is to be followed by a public press conference at 2:30pm this afternoon. 

What we know so far: The proposed project would be in Calgary’s West Village and feature an event centre, field house and FIFA sized sports stadium. More details as they surface. 

What we don’t know so far: Who will pay for what. See update below.

The city and province are justifiably wary about giving up public funded towards an arena. We also know that sports teams and marketing firms have spent the last three decades figuring out the most efficient ways to bilk tax payers out of literally billions of dollars for elaborate arenas and real estate development projects. Today’s media volley is likely the Flames first step in a PR campaign designed to court public “investment”. 

There are ways for a public/private partnership to potentially work, but usually the arrangement is: the team gets the rights and the revenue while the tax payers get the risk and the expenses. We’ll see if the Flames have come up with something a bit more equitable or not. 

Add your thoughts in the comments. 

Update: Proposed project could cost up to $1.2 Billion (!!)

Update 2: If I’m reading this right, the Flames want fans/the public to cover $700M through a few different mechanisms.

  • In all honesty if they really wanted to do this right. They would have worked with the city behind closed doors this whole time (last year in a half) leading up to this proposal. They would have ironed out the infrastructure problems in the area, figured out the costs of remediation and then come forward with the proposal and a true funding structure.

    for me personally it’s very apparenty CSEC is trying to make way like a bandit with all the cash in their pockets. Actually it’s dimmed the way i view them a bit. I was expecting a little better thought behind this with all the “We won’t come in and propose something and walk out of it like we’re stealing from tax payers” type comments from KK.

    I guess I was naive.

  • In my opinion the 2010 city redevelopment plans for West Village is much nicer and would be a much better place to hang out than what the Flames CESC have proposed. It would also provide more revenue for the city than this would. Im not a fan at this moment in time.

  • Johnnydapunk

    Remediation of that area would be great it is an enviromental nightmare. A new field house that would accommodate football, soccer, international events and concerts would be great especially if they can add hotels, shopping and restaurants for additional tax benefits to help pay for that infrastructure.
    There is nothing wrong with the Saddledome it’s a great place to watch a hockey game and the new field house could handle everything else. Calgary needs a new stadium the old one has done its time but an indoor stadium or field house makes the most sense. Money better spent than that horrid blue hoop on airport road and the peace bridge.

  • Derzie

    Having spent the summer unemployed due to the downturn, my perspective has altered. Sports are a religion to some and a casual pastime to others. At the end of the day, it is a way to entertain us or distract us from less enjoyable things. The reality is that building this sports shrine will cost hard working people money to build, inconvenience commuters and citizens for years while being built and all for the privileged to spend hundreds of dollars per event to file in through hoards to be ‘entertained’. The kicker is that people are already able to that at the Saddledome and McMahon and on TV. They feel that the enduring the pain and cost of building a new shrine will somehow make their booze fueled entertainment better. Do people feel that their personal entertainment is worth all of this expense and effort? Are people truly this self centered? Be happy with what we have. An up and coming hockey team that provides us with great entertainment and a perfectly fine facility. Enough with the keeping-up-with-the-Joneses mentality and corporate and personal greed. Be happy with what we have. It is more than adequate, it is decadent. Say no to Ken King and his puppetmasters. They are feeding their egos with this project by exploiting the selfishness of the masses. It is just entertainment at the end of the day.