Quick Slants: Hammer Hurtin and IGF is really a Money Pit
Published: Friday, Sep 28th 2018, 4:09am
by: Greg McCulloch (@GregOnSports)
Quick Slants looks at some of the weekly stories in the CFL and beyond.
Hurtin in the Hammer
After last weeks collapse in BC I’d say the Tiger-Cats couldn’t buy a break, but it appears they are breaking down for free.
The Ticats put all-star DL Jamaal Westermann on the 6-game Injured List, essentially ending his 2018 season. Not great timing for a team that needs all-hands-on-deck if they want to make a run into the playoffs.
With name talent like Shamawd Chambers, Jalen Saunders and Chris Williams already on the IR the Ticats will literally be limping into the playoffs.
Fortunately for them, they are in the East, and Montreal has given up while Toronto is trying to zen master their way in. Chances are they will host the West crossover team, but who will be healthy by then who knows.
Can’t Squeeze Money From a Pit
Repeat after me….
Stadiums don’t make money. PERIOD.
Anyone that has followed pro sports for any length of time understands that arenas, colosseums, gardens, stadiums, field, pavilions, or whatever new name they market now, just do not make money.
They are big investments that cost a lot of time, land, and money. They are delayed, postponed, built incorrectly, and costs increase.
More often than not, they never end up making back close to what they initially cost because by then there are upgrades needed, the team moved, or even the stadium is considered outdated much sooner.
Investors Group Field in Winnipeg was going to be different.
I don’t know why they thought that but, by God, they believed that in the Manitoban Capital.
You think they would have clued in when the stadium was over a year late.
Or when it wasn’t actually designed for big concerts, the types of shows they said they would get with the new stadium so they had to do a bunch of changes.
Or they made the press box open air, which I guess if you aren’t hosting playoff games doesn’t inconvenience the media too much
Or snow melting wasn’t taken into consideration in Winnipeg so when the snow melted the first year the water ran into the building flooding areas causing hundreds of thousands in damages.
Or when the concrete was literally cracking around them.
Or when they put the stadium in the middle of nowhere making it so hard to get to that the “I” in IGF should stand for “Inaccessible”.
But hey, they have the “loudest” fans…
Anyway, the province of Manitoba realized there was no way they were going to get back the money they loaned the stadium owners, which is a consortium consisting of the Bombers, University of Manitoba, City of Winnipeg and the Province of Manitoba.
Wonder who clued them in?
So now, predictably, the Manitoba taxpayer is on the hook for the whole bill. While the Bombers are paying the minimum on their portion of the debt and are asking to refinance so they can afford upgrades.
Now before my words get twisted.
I believe in new arenas and stadiums, however, unless they are privately funded like AT&T stadium in Dallas, they are glorified public works like museums. Which is fine, they are important to a communities culture and sporting community, but they never ever make money.
And they probably never will.
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