Ottawa gets new CFL team! Cost: $196m and public land

The Ottawa city council has finally voted to approve the Frank Clair Stadium reconstruction plan that has been kicking around in litigation for more than two years, and got its reward: The CFL announced that it plans to give Ottawa an expansion team starting in 2014, bringing football back to Canada’s capital for the first time since 2006, when the Renegades folded thanks to massive disinterest.

The estimated public cost is currently at $196 million, plus the use of public parkland for the housing and retail that developer Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group is insisting on getting to build if it’s going to redo the stadium. With public money. But at least it’ll have lots of computer-generated trees, ghostly skyscrapers, and lite jazz!

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3 comments on “Ottawa gets new CFL team! Cost: $196m and public land

  1. Two observations:

    1.) Does anyone have an idea as to where all the parking will go? I don’t see any plans for garages…

    2.) Anyone else notice that the first rendering shows a soccer match being played, even though the title focus is supposedly a CFL team? (Ottawa MLS rumors to start back up again shortly, I assume?)

  2. There is going to be a NASL team. Ottawa isn’t getting MLS if a) Montreal has a team and b) there’s a CFL team directly competing with it during the summer, I remember that Eugene Melnyk tried to force another plan through that was soccer only, this one was the football based one.

    I think football could work again, the league looks far more stable than it did in the early 2000s. Just don’t call them the Rough Riders…

    I think the most ridiculous thing about the renderings is the size of the hallway on image 16. That’d be fun at halftime.

  3. Renderings are poor… but judging by the images released of the “new” Hamilton stadium the finished product may be poor too.

    Parking is going to be a huge issue unless one of those condo/shopping towers is magically transformed into a multi tier parking garage (which, frankly, will be needed for both the shopping, stadium and other attractions in the area). They have taken all the parking for the Aberdeen Pavillion and the old stadium and turned it into green space…

    As a CFL fan I’m happy that Ottawa is coming back in (the previous failures had far more to do with appalling ownership than fan disinterest). Still, the cost is outrageous considering the ‘potential benefit’ to the community. It looks more like a real estate play than anything (which is what Melnyk’s MLS interest was about, also).

    At least this is commercial real estate, not like the disastrous Senators non-development in Kanata.

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