Just when you thought the Asper’s finances were down and out with the whole Canwest fiasco, David Asper came through.
The media mogul announced Friday his intentions to purchase the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the stadium near Polo Park for commercial development on that site.
The new 30,000 seat, fan-friendly stadium (expandable to 45,000 seats) will be constructed by Asper’s Creswin Properties Ltd. on a 20 acre site within the sports precinct at the intersection of University Crescent and Chancellor Matheson Drive at the University of Manitoba, Fort Garry Campus. The proposal for the U of M site was first announced back in September.
The financial core of the deal includes a $100 million plus private sector investment that significantly alleviates the load on taxpayers due to the retail development and economic engine at Polo Park. The project will also provide an important economic stimulus for Manitoba in terms of creating an estimated 1,468 person-years of employment and $26.2 million in new tax revenues. Signed agreements will provide for:
- $35 million in joint support from the Government of Canada and Province of Manitoba. Federal funding will be strictly limited to the amateur and community sport venues
- Acquisition of Winnipeg Blue Bombers with change in ownership slated for early 2010
- Multi-year land lease by UM, subject to final approval by its Board of Governors
- Sale of existing stadium site at fair market value, subject to final approval by City Council
Shovels are expected to be in the ground by spring 2010, with a estimated opening by the 2011 football season.
Acquisition of Winnipeg Blue Bombers with change in ownership slated for early 2010.