One of the final reports came from Executive Committee: CR11-167 the P3 market sounding results presented to the Regina Revitalization Initiative (RRI). The recommendations are as follows
1. That a Public Private Partnership (P3) model in the development of a replacement for Mosaic Stadium be support.
2. That the Administration be authorized to pursue the development of a process to establish a Design/Build/Finance/Maintain Public Private Partnership procurement approach to construct and operate the replacement for Mosaic Stadium, with the final plan provided to City Council for final consideration.
3. Prior to going to the market for the P3, Administration will provide a report to Council seeking direction on the choice of stadium design (open air vs. fixed or retractable roof).
Councilors hope the P3 process will help in two major ways: The first, to take away some the risk associated with a massive project such as the proposed stadium and share it with private partners. Councilors reiterated that the city did not have the capacity to build a stadium and would need partners to bring in their investment. The second is to have a better planned project, so there are potentially fewer cost over runs.
An important component of Deliotte’s report was finding potential partners; with 19 of the 32 selected firms suggesting the stadium would be an interesting project to undertake.
Council, unsurprisingly, adopted the recommendations.
I took away positives and negatives from this report. In an argument for the stadium, Mayor Fiacco said something that resonated with me: if council didn’t look at the option of a stadium, that would be a mistake, just the same as if they went out and built one full steam ahead.
I tend to agree that looking at the potential/feasibility of a stadium is fair. Assessing the options available to the city, with a massive change occurring at the city centre, makes sense.
What seems unfair, however, is that no other possibilities have been considered and presented to the public thus far. Why is there only one answer after the question; what do we do with this space?
Another interesting point came when an administration member spoke of the duty/requirement to replace the stadium. That idea is very interesting. I hadn’t thought of Taylor Field as a city responsibility before. It would not be a priority comparable to core responsibilities like sewage management and fire protection, but I imagine some may see a stadium to be on par with pools or libraries.
Councilors lost me, unfortunately, when they started to ascribe opposition to the idea of a new stadium as hysterical, lacking vision, without facts and based on misinformation. The only example of misinformation the mayor cited was that people thought it was a billion dollar stadium not a billion dollar project (the project includes housing which brings the total cost to the billion mark).
This stadium is the next step: councilor Fougere spoke of a new stadium taking the city to the next level and the mayor mentioned how children in Regina are excited and dream of this stadium. Indeed this stadium might just attract and retain young people once it’s built.
First, I can’t recall anyone mixing up the billion dollar project with the stadium in any serious way. No councilor gave any evidence of misinformation beyond that example.
Second, the costs from the stadium study in 2009 are probably well out of date, and suggesting this could be a more expensive project than previously thought seems clear. The cost of the project is an issue.
The mayor belittling his audience suggests to me a determination and focus for this project that wont likely go away. He is also well supported by, apparently, every councilor. In some ways standing in the way of this may be the least effective way to steer this project into a good place. One feeling I took out of last Monday’s meeting was acceptance of this luxury item as a major piece for the city in the coming years. It could be beneficial to participate here in order to see positives come from what they create.