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Transitway or new stadium?

Not only could the city have to choose between a football stadium in the Glebe and a soccer stadium in Kanata, but that choice may come at the cost of completing the Transitway.

Not only could the city have to choose between a football stadium in the Glebe and a soccer stadium in Kanata, but that choice may come at the cost of completing the Transitway.

At yesterday’s planning and environment committee meeting, city manager Kent Kirkpatrick warned councillors that any federal and provincial funding invested in a new stadium would likely come out of other infrastructure projects.

“I don’t believe there is a pot of funds that exists, separate, over and above that funding that is currently being discussed by the governments that would be available simply because we have the opportunity to invest in an open air stadium,” he said.

Kirkpatrick said it could come down to an ultimatum between investing in the stadium and completing the southwest Transitway.

A group of prominent Ottawa businessmen, led by Ottawa 67’s owner Jeff Hunt, are proposing to redevelop Lansdowne Park and bring a CFL franchise back to Ottawa. The redevelopment would include a hotel, aquarium, shopping area and rebuilt stadium.

They are competing with a proposal from Senators owner Eugene Melnyk to build an entertainment district in Kanata, with a new stadium to house a Major League Soccer franchise.

The city would have to pay at least $100 million to build both stadiums.

Orleans Coun. Bob Monette said there was no way the city could afford the $100 million and they would need the federal and provincial governments to agree.

Planning and environment chairman Peter Hume called it a significant twist that will complicate the debate much more.

“That’s an incredible debate for us to be having. Transit. Stadium. One or the other,” Hume said. “That is just not a winning proposition in terms of comparing the funding to all the other infrastructure priorities.”

 
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