[url=http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/breakingnews/Stadium-announcement-slated-for-1030-am-42321527.html]http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/breaki ... 21527.html[/url]
The football-stadium debate that began more than four years ago may finally end this morning, as property developer Creswin and the University of Manitoba plan to announce the completion of a deal to create a new home for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
The Manitoba and federal governments are expected to each contribute $15 million to the $140 million project, with the province kicking in another $5 million for a fitness centre.
Creswin, the university, the Bombers and all three levels of government have told officials to gather at a 10:30 a.m. press conference that should reveal all the funding details of a stadium along Chancellor Matheson Road.
The deal will involve the creation of 1,500 jobs in construction and is expected to generate more than $20 million in tax revenue for the Manitoba government.
What remains undecided is how Asper will develop the site of the existing Polo Park stadium into retail stores.
Design work for the new stadium will start now, including how it will fit on the U of M site.
Shovels should be in the ground by fall, with the stadium expected to open by 2011.
The Winnipeg Football Club has been seeking a new home to replace Canad Inns stadium since late 2004.
After first trying to arranage deals for locations at Polo Park and South Point Douglas, Creswin owner David Asper and the U of M signed a memorandum of understanding last summer. But it took several more months to work out financing arrangements.
Under previously announced terms, the deal will see the city of Winnipeg sell Creswin the existing Canad Inns Stadium site at full market value, which will allow the company to use commercial revenues to help fund the new Bombers stadium development and a refurbishment of the existing University Stadium at the U of M.