Field of Schemes
sports stadium news and analysis


This is an archived version of a Field of Schemes article. Comments on this page are closed. To find the current version of the article with updated comments, click here.

June 16, 2010

Oilers rezoning delayed amid money questions

Apologies for not reporting this when it broke last week: The owner of the Edmonton Oilers has postponed a public zoning hearing on his proposed $1.4 billion arena-and-redevelopment plan, originally planned for June 28, until the fall.

The reason, as team VP Bob Black put it: Questions about how exactly the project would be paid for "have been distracting from the zoning application." (Nobody could even focus on the beautiful plumage!)

Read further, though, and it appears that the Edmonton city council were the ones getting antsy about hearing financing details before voting on the zoning, with one calling it "a more intelligent sequence of events." It also can't hurt that after October 18, both mayor Stephen Mandel and the council will be done with their electoral campaigns, so won't have to worry as much about blowback from whatever Katz proposes.


Good points, Neil.

Both city council and the planning dept have been getting a little antsy themselves. Katz assembled the land base (typical downtown blight, mostly) and put together the bright and shiny proposal without ever talking to anyone at city hall about how suitable this parcel would be for an arena, or what infrastructure improvements would be required.

While the parcel has some characteristics to recommend it, traffic access is not one of them. This parcel has no legitimate access to main truck and heavy goods routes (unlike the present arena, which has direct multilane access to the city's main through route and a N/S connector)

The "who will pay" question still hasn't been answered, but "how do we get attractions in/out" is a pretty important one as well...

Posted by John Bladen on June 17, 2010 10:49 PM

Latest News Items