Asper Cracks Open the Wallet!!!



Fresh from David Asper:

Asper Commits up to $100 Million to Help Construct Trio of World-Class Sport & Active Living Facilities

[i]Construction of a new stadium and multi-sport complex took a tangible step forward today following the announcement that a Letter of Intent has been inked between Creswin Properties Ltd. and the University of Manitoba designating a site at the intersection of Chancellor Matheson Drive and University Crescent for development.

The trio of new facilities will enhance the University's reputation as a year-round sport and community recreation destination and position it as a leader in active living across Canada. Key components of the 25 acre development include:

Premium Stadium, Amateur Sport 'Bubble' & Elite Training Centre - including 30,000 spacious seats (expandable to 45,000), 25 foot deep in-ground bowl, top quality concessions, enhanced washrooms, private suites, Blue Bomber Hall of Fame, dedicated Bomber/Bison Elite Training Centre, a new 700 stall parkade, 'fan-tram' to connect to 7,000 existing parking spaces plus on site food service, restaurant & sports lounge facilities.

Ground-Up Renovation of University Stadium - preservation of track & field oval, installation of inflatable seasonal 'Bubble' and refurbishment of seating, washrooms & lockers.

World-Class Fitness Centre - a new fitness facility for University students, amateur athletes and the community, featuring top equipment and operated by the University to replace the 'Gritty Grotto'.
For complete details, go to[/i]

Nice. Lets all pray it actually happens.

Good to hear, your bomber fans deserve a new stadium. Love goin to the banjo bowl but ur stadium is just a bit better than Mosiac :smiley:

This is a sweet deal. Best of all it works on all levels and will shut the whiners up who don't want government money going into anything. Could be a good example for places like Regina to follow.

Let’s clone Mr. Asper and send to QC and to the Atlantic provinces.
Yes Regina and Hamilton must build new to rid themselves of their respective dumps and to rejuvinate the citizens.

okay if this guy is committing $100 million, why does he still need government support, this crook is a billionaire, he doesn't need gov't money, he wants a handout for nothing, bmo field cost 60 million and has 20,000 seats, this asper dude could spend his billions and build it all privately financed, he could even get his rich cronies to help him out.

Don`t compare it to BMO field, that is a dump and should not have cost no more the $10M, but since our taxpayers dollars paid for it, we got ripped off and they stole our money.
Give me Mr. Asper any day of the week.

asper is overrated, all talk no walk, shovels should be in the ground by now, for 100 million he oculd build a stadium and get the job done, no additional funds are neccessary, bmo is a dump but what do you expect from toronto, toronto archictecture is garbage.

This isn't just a single stadium though. It sounds like his plans will cost ALOT more.

Dumb, Dumb, Dumb and Dumb.

If he's serious he may as well go back to the plan where the the stadium is built in Headingly. There is a complete lack of infrastructure, services and hotel space in Headingly too Mr. Asper.

Doesn't anyone think it's just a little too coincidental? After killing the rapid transit plan 2 years ago the Conservative Club at city hall comes up with even more cash for thier own rapid transit. All it takes to get rapid transit is a Conservative Club member to come begging for public money to fund the latest manifestation of his Oedifice complex.

If Asper expects to make a go of this he will need rapid transit. It's not that there is no parking. Hell, there is nothing but ample parking where he proposes to build. But he must realize that he'll need that transit route to draw in the far-flung fans.

This is not a stadium proposal at all. It's just another example of conservatives seperating money from the people to boost one of their own. I don't mind government seperating me from my money if I get something out of it. In this case all I can see coming out of this is more demands for handouts in the future.

Yes, we need a new stadium. There are only two locations that have the necessary infrastructure in place to make it affordable. Those locations are the current site and the downtown. There is significant lack of space downtown so we are left with the current site. The C Club is not even going to consider that so I will stand by my previous prediction. - In a few years structural engineers will condemn part of the current stadium and the team will fold or move to Ottawa.

Right... the proposed government contribution went from $80M... to $200M... to $50... and only NOW you think you're getting fleeced? Besides, it does say that the current site of the stadium would be purchased by Creswin, which could put more money in the government coffers.

And what's all this nonsense about rapid transit? Doesn't it just say there'll be a "fan tram", whatever the hell that is? It could just be one of those really long golf cart trains that they use at the zoo to take the customers on tours.

Man, what is with people in Winnipeg? Sometimes you guys seem like the most gloomy people in the entire world. A rich guy's gonna spend $100M of his own money to build up the city's sporting infrastructure and put University of Manitoba at the top of CIS sports... and it will only cost $40M in public money! And even then, $15M IS FEDERAL! Meaning a good chunk of it was paid by people in another province!

....I wonder what other excuses the feds. will come up with, to shoot this one down...don't hold your breath guys...once harper gets your vote'll be back of the bus to you....and 'geez, didn;t you guys know, all of our priorities (conservatives) are in Quebec and lol lol..see ya later... :lol: :lol: :lol:

i like the fact he has stepped up and added in so much more of his cost. and i think it is a great idea for the bombers, and the u of m. because in the prjected plan it is the stadium to revamp university stadium, and build a new "wold class" fitness centre.

The only thing is the federal governemnt is still going to say no to any funding.

Yeah, that’s a tough one. I’m speaking of course of jerk-off Lawrence Cannon.

Some key differences between here and Quebec:

  1. The Quebec project was slated to get $37.5M from the feds. Asper only needs $15M

  2. The project in Quebec had already been reviewed, signed and agreed upon before the CFL bid group suggested an alteration. Redoing all the due dilligence would have cost lots of time and money.

  3. Laval was definitely NOT on board with the stadium group’s plan. From reading the letters up on, the people at U of M are positively thrilled with the whole plan.

  4. The Laval project was able to go forward without a hitch after the stadium proposal was rejected. If the feds reject Asper’s proposal, it would scuttle a $140M dollar project for the community and university.

  5. I haven’t heard Lawrence Cannon’s name associated with the Winnipeg situation until the Quebec project was rejected. Until then, it was always Vic Toews who seemed to be the federal gatekeeper, and he’s certainly been open to stadium proposals that could be considered “community” building.

Tom Broadbeck, Winnipeg Sun
Sep 14, 2008

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[i]David Asper’s plan to build a new football stadium for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers at the University of Manitoba became a lot more palatable Saturday when he announced he’s willing to increase his contribution to $100 million from $40 million.

He now wants $35 million from taxpayers instead of $80 million.

The University of Manitoba appears willing to give him the land for free in exchange for access to the stadium. It would double as a new home for the Bisons.

Asper would assume ownership of the team.

Naturally, the devil is always in the details and there are still some unanswered questions:

• Do the Bisons get to use the facility rent-free? And for how long?

• What is meant by a “partially covered? stadium?

• To what extent will university teams and other amateur sports get to use the facility rent-free? Those are important questions because it allows us to assess the public benefit of putting $35 million into a new stadium.

• Will Asper pay property taxes on the stadium?

• Part of the plan is to sell land at the existing Polo Park site to Asper so he can use it to develop commercial enterprises to help subsidize the Bombers. Will taxpayers be selling him that land at fair market value? Will he pay property taxes at that location?[/i]

Long journey for a stadium

Bartley Kives, Winnipeg Free Press
September 14, 2008 at 11:12 AM CDT

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[i]A new fitness facility at the University of Manitoba and a refurbished University Stadium are part of David Asper’s plans to build a new home for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in Fort Garry.

After floating previous stadium proposals for Polo Park and South Point Douglas, the Canwest executive has placed a greater emphasis on amateur sport in an attempt to win over would-be funders on Parliament Hill and in the Manitoba Legislature.

On Saturday afternoon, Asper unveiled a $150-million plan to build a new stadium for both the Bombers and the U of M Bisons, improve the track and field facility at University Stadium and build a new stand-alone fitness centre that will replace the aging “gritty grotto? at the U of M’s Frank Kennedy Centre.

“I have been on the longest journey possible to get from Polo Park to the University of Manitoba campus,? Asper quipped during the halftime break during a football match between the Bisons and the UBC Thunderbirds.

That journey began in January 2006, when Asper asked Ottawa and Broadway for $80 million to build a new football facility at the existing site of Canad Inns Stadium.

But after a surprise detour through South Point Douglas early this summer, he settled on a U of M plan he claims will primarily benefit amateur sport — and only require $35 million from the provincial and federal governments.

Asper said he will spend “up to $100 million? to make the three-pronged, $150-million U of M proposal a reality and use proceeds from the future redevelopment of commercial land at Polo Park to bridge the financial gap.

Asper said he and city have agreed on a process that will eventually see Canad Inns Stadium demolished and the land beneath — one of the most valuable commercial tracts in Winnipeg — sold to his Creswin Properties at fair market value.

The subsequent development, which Asper suggested would be some form of shopping mall, would provide the steady stream or revenue necessary to keep the Winnipeg Football Club afloat in future years.

“I may take a significant haircut as a businessman on what I would otherwise earn at that project (because I’m directing) it toward constructing leisure facilities at the U of M,? Asper said. “I’m a businessman. I like to try to make a buck. But there’s also an altruistic purpose here.?

The Polo Park property would only be developed after a new stadium rises on 10 hectares of land at the northwest corner of University Crescent and Chancellor Matheson Drive.

The slow flow of Polo Park funds would force Asper to resort to bank financing for the U of M project, which will be tricky in the current, risk-averse financial climate. “You don’t need to remind me of the financing issues we’ll be confronting,? he quipped.

Asper has asked Ottawa to contribute $15 million to the project, which is the same figure senior Manitoba MP Vic Toews has said he would try to find for a stadium proposal that included a strong amateur-sport component. But there is no assurance any Conservative cabinet minister will sign on to the plan in the middle of a federal election campaign.

Manitoba, meanwhile, has been asked to provide $20 million. But a spokesman for Premier Gary Doer said the province is not prepared to comment on Asper’s latest proposal until it has a chance to study it.

Winnipeg Mayor Sam Katz, however, said he fully supports the notion of selling Asper land at Polo Park and affording a new football stadium the same city tax breaks currently enjoyed by Canad Inns Stadium.

Asper’s new Polo Park development could generate $7 million to $8 million in annual property taxes for the city and province, which is revenue Katz called significant.

As well, the mayor said a U of M stadium could be constructed more easily than a similar building at South Point Douglas, given the absence of land-assembly and engineering issues at the Fort Garry campus.

Asper said the ground at the U of M is better suited for excavation than both the Polo Park and South Point Douglas sites, which means more of the stadium bowl could be situated below the ground.

That would not only make it cheaper to build a new stadium (less height above grade means less steel and other construction materials) but also allow the project to be completed more quickly, he said.

“We’d love to get shovels in the ground by the end of the calendar year, but that’s going to be tight. We’d love to be playing in the new building by 2010,? he said.

David Barnard, the U of M’s new president, said he is excited about the prospects of developing a corner of the Fort Garry campus that has always been reserved for sports.

But the Winnipeg Football Club is in no position to approve the U of M proposal, because it has not been presented with a new business plan or any other details, said CEO Lyle Bauer.

“From a legal standpoint, there is one deal on the table, and that’s the current, existing site,? said Bauer, referring to Polo Park, which the club chose following a formal bid process in 2006.

The big picture finally unfolds

What David Asper’s Creswin Properties has proposed for the University of Manitoba, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Polo Park:

At Chancellor Matheson Drive and University Crescent:

-A 30,000-seat football stadium for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and University of Manitoba Bisons, expandable to 45,000 for special events. The stadium bowl would be eight metres deep, allowing for almost half the rows to be built at or below ground level. Asper also promises better legroom, washrooms, concessions and private suites at the new facility.

-A training centre for the Bombers and Bisons within the stadium.

-A bubble over the playing surface to allow winter use.

-A Blue Bomber Hall of Fame within the stadium.

-A new 700-stall parkade outside the new stadium, plus a “fan tram? to connect the stadium with 7,000 existing parking stalls at the university.

-Shovels could be in the ground late this year, if governments sign on to the plan.

At the existing University Stadium:

-Refurbishment of existing seats, locker rooms and washrooms.

-A second bubble for the playing surface during the winter.

-Track and field facility remains in place.

Elsewhere at the University of Manitoba:

-A new fitness centre to replace aging facility at Frank Kennedy Centre. Will be open to the public as well as university students and staff.

At Polo Park:

-New commercial development at the existing site of Canad Inns Stadium, which would be demolished. Asper says he knows what he wants to build there but is not prepared to let the cat out of the bag.

For the Winnipeg Football Club:

-Asper would own the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, but would sign an agreement ensuring the team would remain in the city in perpetuity.

Who pays for it all?

-Asper plans to spend “up to $100 million? toward University of Manitoba components of his plan, which would cost a total of approximately $150 million. Asper plans to use debt-financing to start the project.

-The University of Manitoba will contribute 10 hectares of land.

-The province will be asked to contribute $20 million.

-Ottawa will be asked to contribute $15 million.

-The City of Winnipeg would offer the new facility the same tax exemptions enjoyed by Canad Inns Stadium right now. That means the new U of M stadium will not be subject to property and education taxes.

-The city will also sell Creswin the existing site of Canad Inns Stadium at fair market value, allowing Asper to use proceeds from that development to fund both the stadium and the Winnipeg Football Club.

-Creswin will pay all property and education taxes on the Polo Park land. The city and province are expected to earn approximately $7 million a year from those taxes.

And who has signed on?

-Creswin and the University of Manitoba are on board.

-The Winnipeg Football Club has yet to see a business plan or approve the proposal.

-Mayor Sam Katz is OK with the plan, which faces city council approval.

-Manitoba Premier Gary Doer has previously said he is amenable to funding a a stadium project but has not signed on for $20 million.

-Senior Manitoba MP Vic Toews has previously said he would attempt to secure $15 million for a stadium with a strong amateur-sport component. But Ottawa has not signed on.[/i]

Very good observation. Creswin properties or whatever they call themselves is unheard of in Winnipeg. This is sort of a numbered company a fly by night company. I very much doubt if they have anybody employed. In Saturdays Winnipeg Free Press there was a big hoopla about Asper saying this and that regarding the stadium. One sentence said it all. The Federal Ministers are against funding for CFL stadiums. They turned down Laval bid that had an amateur sport component added to the deal. Asper has been told on numerous occasions that Taxpayer money is not available for stadium construction. Also it is very sleazy of him that when Milt Stegall should be basking in publicity in Saturday's paper. Mr Asper had decided to make another stadium announcement in Winnipeg stealing Stegall's thunder. But this is the nature of the beast us Winnipeg fans have had to put up with. Mr Asper is just another Glieberman.


… you guys smell that?.. almost smells like… sour grapes?.. did someone leave some grapes out too long?.. hey housedog, any idea who left the grapes out?.. I’m only asking because I’m definitely detecting the scent of sour grapes… and it appears to be coming from your general direction… I just thought maybe, I dunno, since the sour grape smell is coming from your direction… you know… you may have happened to see if in fact, the scent we’re all smelling really IS sour grapes…

P.S. Never in my life did I think anyone would follow a touchdown69 post with “Very good observation”.

When Gleiberman/Asper takes over the Bombers. You and some Asper supporters will be smelling something, but the smell will be far worse than sour grapes.

If you're going to call someone a "crook", even if they're a billionaire and especially in a public forum, it would be wise to actually have some facts to back up that contention.

Just because someone is rich doesn't mean they're a crook. Calling them one when they aren't is tantamount to libel.

Gosh, I would think people would think this guy is a hero for stepping up to the plate and putting his money where his mouth is. He seems committed to his city and his team and the CFL. He's trying his hardest to get a deal done. If we listen to the nay sayers and rich haters Winnipeg will NEVER get a new stadium.

I personally smell a rat when I see posts such as the one from TD69 and housedog. It makes me wonder what their real agenda is. dog....what are you worrying are convinced that the feds. AREN'T gonna cough-up any dough for a much deserved facility in the Peg... so why all the hot air????? HOWEVER if you're wrong are you gonna quit being part of the Bomber faithful...cuz Asper owns the BigBlue...I better not catch you at the new digs..that would be quite hypocitical of you.. :wink: :lol: