Comment 56649

By PaulS (anonymous) | Posted January 17, 2011 at 12:19:34

When I decided to write this article, I too was suffering from stadium fatigue and thought about the point of bringing this issue forward. What refocused my thinking was the fact that we are spending at least $45 million dollars of our Future Fund money, money we will not be getting back. No matter how tiring this debate becomes, I would think we should never just sign over $45 million out of fatigue.

The Ivor Wynne plan might be a workable plan, but we have literally millions of dollars in plans, priorities, and investments tied to west harbour development. Everything from the provincial Places to Grow Plan, our Official Plan, our transportation and rapid transit plans, to our corporate strategy, the current land assembly costs, the metrolinx regional transportation plan, not to mention the investments in the adjacent downtown which, collectively are about creating a critical mass of infrastructure investment to both stabilize and boost the area’s development potential. This is to say nothing of the whole concept of putting a new face of Hamilton to the world when the international community comes to our region.

If we are still going to contemplate spending our Future Fund on this initiative, then we need to assess how to get maximum benefit from the Pan Am investment. If that can be achieved at Ivor Wynne, great, but there is simply too much on the line to ignore, even at this late stage. The fact remains that we have the opportunity to achieve several city development objectives in a four year time-frame which is unheard of in normal circumstances, let along at the traditional development speed in Hamilton.

There was a great blog entry by a Hamilton-born sports writer that sums up the issue rather well:

Damien Cox - The Toronto Star

My thumb is down to the stadium resolution in Hamilton. The clever Mr. Hodge says it's a "Wynne-Wynne" but I'm not so sure. All of the wrangling and discussions and arguments and bitterness, I thought if there was going to be a stadium that it would be a gem, but instead what are they going to do? They are going to refurbish Ivor Wynne Stadium. I suppose that makes some sense to some people, but I don't know how they are going to play football games there while they are rebuilding the place. Somehow they are going to do it, but it would seem that they missed out on a great opportunity in Hamilton.

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