Tweaked Stadium Deal Now Worth $190 Million

A rendering of the future football stadium at the University of Manitoba (BLUEANDGOLD.CA)

A reworked deal worth $190 million will see the future 33,000-seat football stadium at the University of Manitoba trudge ahead.

After a closed-door meeting on Monday afternoon, city council received details of the deal, which punts developer David Asper and his company Creswin Properties from any future involvement. Creswin will be compensated $4 million out of the $6 million worth of work they contributed for engineering and designing.

Last week, Mayor Sam Katz urged the deal was “critical” for council to pass by December 15 — the last meeting of the year. It’s expected it will get through council without any hurdles.

Under the new terms, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers will pay back $85 million to the province over 40 years, taking on a larger debt load than under the original deal worth $115 million. Costs will be recovered by adding a surcharge to ticket prices and other revenues associated with the flashy facility. The provincial government will also put up an additional $75 million, to be paid back by tax revenue from development on the current stadium site. This does not include the already $22.5 million grant provided by the NDP government to cover the majority of construction costs.

The city will commit $7.5 million to the project, which will be generated from the sale of Canad Inns Stadium. The Fort Richmond Coalition, a group against the development of the stadium, has long been raising concerns about traffic congestion and noise in the area. The City of Winnipeg’s investment partially includes improvements to alleviate future traffic problems.

There is no financial involvement from the private sector in the new agreement, meaning the Blue Bombers will remain community owned.

The Winnipeg Football Club and the University of Manitoba boards have yet to approve the deal.

UPDATE: 7 p.m. — The Winnipeg Football Club’s Board of Directors have approved the deal.