Home stretch! CFL 4, Melnyk 1


This article states the criteria with which the City of Ottawa has asked it's assessment committee to evaluate the two stadium proposals:

Lansdowne or Kanata?
Committee sets stadium criteria


March 11, 2009 05:50

[i]While some people may be trying to determine whether a sports stadium is best built in Kanata or at Lansdowne Park, others may be trying to decide which is the “least worst.?

“Both of the proposals call for taxpayers to undertake some risk in making payments that could be repaid if the stadium and the franchise is successful,? said Knoxdale-Merivale Coun. Gord Hunter. “But if they are not successful ... then that’s a risk to the taxpayers. We won’t get a long-term return on investment.?

Yesterday, the city’s planning committee approved the assessment process for evaluating both proposals.

Out of six main criteria, risk to the city is weighted at 35 points out of 100. The overall need for a stadium will be scored out of 25 points. Just how strong the business plan for each stadium is will be weighted at 20 points. The remaining 20 points are spread evenly between facility design and site considerations.

By stressing the amount of risk to the city, Capital Ward Coun. Clive Doucet said, it could cast an element of doubt on both proposals.

Since there is a trend toward central urban intensification, Doucet said a stadium out in Kanata is not a good long-term location and the focus of the debate should be if either of the sites are ideal for the next 100 years.

A seven-member assessment team consisting of city staff with expertise in finance, real estate and servicing, as well as a consultant who has already evaluated the Lansdowne Live proposal will be tabling a report with their recommendation on March 25.

Both the Lansdowne Live group and Senators Sports and Entertainment will present their vision to a joint meeting of the city’s planning and environment and the corporate services and economic development committees on April 6.[/i]

Advantage: Jeff Hunt & co.

35/100: RISK.

If the new CFL franchise goes belly-up, and must exit their lease, the City of Ottawa comes out ahead with Lansdowne Park. Right now, they pay $5M per year for a park that does nothing. In the event that the CFL franchise folded, and the Hunt group continued to manage Lansdowne park, they would be paying $5M in interest payments on the loan per year, while enjoying tax revenue from all the activity taking place in the retail/office/hotel/convention/acquarium space. They would probably come out ahead.

In the event that the Hunt group tossed in the keys and stopped managing Lansdowne, the City would again need to take over those approximate $5M in maintenance costs, plus the interest payments on the loan which could mean another $5M, but they would also become the proud owners and managers of all that commercial space. One hopes that the city could manage to cobble together a deal to lease the space for at lease a combined $5M per year, and that is probably way on the low end, and is no worse off than when they started. Essentially, this is no risk for the city.

Suppose, despite all Melnyk's heart-felt personal guarantees, his soccer franchise goes in the tank. Not only is the city stuck shelling out $5M per year for empty Lansdowne park, they now become the owners and operators of an empty 30k seat soccer stadium in Kanata with natural turf (more expensive to maintain) and no revenue-generating tenants. They don't get any revenue from the development of Melnyk's big business development, that is scheduled to be built after the soccer team is established. Worst case scenario: the City of Ottawa has the nightmare of empty Lansdowne x2.


I have no idea what this is supposed to measure. Furthermore, how are the two proposals supposed to score differently on the city's overall need for a stadium?


I have every confidence in both Hunt and Melnyk to make strong business cases. So far, Melnyk's team has tended to present fudged numbers to Council, particularly regarding the CFL's revenue-generating capabilities. The Hunt group has spent more time with city planners, so hopefully their plan has addressed more of the city's concerns than has the Melnyk proposal. One of the assessment team members has been involved with the ongoing Lansdowne Live assessment, so hopefully familiarity breeds confidence. For the sake of arguments, lets call it a draw.


Hunt is proposing a multi-use facility in the heart of the city on a site that is currently an enourmous drain on city resources. Melnyk is proposing a new toy for his own exclusive use in the middle of a parking lot way the hell out in Kanata. Again, hopefully the fact that Hunt & co have had more time with city planners will play to their advantages here, and the fact that Melnyk seems to change his mind every week as to what this stadium will ultimately do in the end will make the assessment team nervous.

Hopefully you're right on all those points, dmont, about Hunt having the advantage.

One differing factor on the "Overall need for a stadium" point may be the overall need for a soccer stadium vs. the overall need for a football stadium vs. the overall need for any kind of outdoor stadium. I would still consider Lansdowne to have the advantage here since you'd get a football AND soccer stadium in one ...

Is it only me from afar, but enough already.
I am getting punch drunk with this daily dose of this marathon, worse then the everedy bunny.
To the crooked politicians of Ottawa(yes we all have our own), make a decision that's what you are paid to do.
Declare a "winner" once and for all.

It also bodes well for Hunt's group that they are willing to make the facility a multi use one while Melnyk has only one kind of football in mind.

That makes sense. And they actually HAVE a franchise instead of a bunch of vague promises.

Me too, but man, I was following some of the stuff going on in Portland at mid-week and it almost made me appreciate our clear, concise project. :wink:

IIRC, they had 44 speakers over a six hour period. Fandesrens was sharing some of the questions and comments that he heard prior to my looking in.

"Will there be a place for women on your team?"
"Why MLS? Did you first try to join a european league?"
"Will you keep both soccer teams (USL and MLS) going at the same time?

I believe these were citizens but still. You'd think they'd have at least a working knowledge of how this stuff...huh...works prior to questioning it.

One lady complained that the construction might keep her dog awake during the day and he gets aggressive when he doesnt' get his sleep. :lol:

And that it’s been their stance from day one. It’s even on their originally Q&A.

Sure beats Melnyk’s half-hearted “I like football, I just like soccer more” comment. :roll: Who would actually trust him to pursue a team now if it came down to it? :?

As I stated on another thread - the advantage for Hunt's group is the future of Junior Hockey in Ottawa.
Without Frank Clair stadium there is no Civic Centre, you tear down the North side stands and the Civic Centre goes with it.
One of the reasons that the 67s has been drawing large crowds over the years has been its central location and the ownership of Hunt. Ottawa has one of the highest attendance in JR hockey.
If the city gives Melnyk the go ahead will they build a new downtown arena for the 67s? There is no chance of that. Hunt will never move the 67s to Melnyks arena.

Hunt and the CFL 5, Melnyk 1

Melnyk just will say anything. It's kind of funny in a way if it weren't for the fact he is stalling the Lansdowne Live project.

Not to be trusted in another words.

Hence his "cosmopolitan flair". Whatever is fashionable, he will say it.

Vancouver is expected to chosen as the 17th MLS franchise on Tuesday according to the Team 1040, and TSN. Portland is also expected to be chosen as the 18th franchise later this month should they provide a solid stadium plan and strong financial backing to the MLS brass. Looks like Melnyk's MLS bid might be running out of luck.

[b]Whitecaps to Get MLS Expansion Team as Soon as Wednesday[/b]

Mar. 13, 2009

TEAM 1040 has learned that MLS officials will be in Vancouver next week to announce that Vancouver is one of two organizations that will be awarded a 2011 expansion franchise.

Three other cities remain in the running - Portland, St. Louis and Ottawa.

Portland is expected to be named as the second expansion franchise, but that announcement won't be made official until later in the month. Sources tell the TEAM 1040 that Portland's bid must prove it has a solid stadium plan and stronger financing for it's bid. Earlier this week, Portland city council voted to approve plans to convert PGE Park - Portland's baseball stadium - into a soccer-specific facility.

Vancouver's bid is the only one that includes a firm facility - a renovated BC Place - and also has the financial backing of long-time Whitecaps owner Greg Kerfoot, Yahoo's Jeff Mallett, and Steve Nash.

The Whitecaps are on a tour of Tanzania, but most of the brass, including Bob Lenarduzzi, have stayed in Vancouver to deal with any late-coming issues related to the 2011 bid.

Lenarduzzi and the Whitecaps have maintained that their bid has always been one of the top-two. Lenarduzzi re-iterated those thoughts two weeks ago when Miami withdrew it's bid.

" I think that our bid - regardless of the competition from the outset - has been a solid one. I think we were always prepared to be one of the last two standing even if the other cities had stayed with the bid process. We're just doing as we set out to do at the start of this whole process and that is to just worry about our own bid, keep our heads down, and ideally we'll be one of the two left standing when they (MLS) make their announcement."

Expansion fees of $40 million turned Montreal and Atlanta away, while the overall economic situation in the USA drove Miami's bid into the ground.

And from TSN [url=http://www.tsn.ca/soccer/story/?id=271087&lid=headline&lpos=topStory_soccer]http://www.tsn.ca/soccer/story/?id=2710 ... ory_soccer[/url]
Major League Soccer is coming to Vancouver, reports TEAM 1040.

According to the radio station, sources have informed them that MLS officials will be in the city next week to officially award the expansion franchise.

The team will begin play in 2011.

In addition, there is one more expansion team to be awarded and three cities are still in the hunt: Portland, St. Louis and Ottawa.

Other sources told TEAM 1040 that Portland has the inside track, but must have stronger financial backing in place before MLS will award them a franchise. The announcement on the second expansion team is not expected until later in March.

Whitecaps president Bob Lenarduzzi has remained behind while his team is on a tour of Tanzania. Lenarduzzi has stated throughout the process that the Vancouver bid was one of the two strongest.

The strength of the Vancouver bid stems from solid financial backing by Whitecaps owner Greg Kerfoot, Yahoo's Jeff Mallett and Phoenix Suns star Steve Nash, plus a newly renovated BC Place for the team to play in.

Also reported by the Vancouver Sun

[url=http://www.canada.com/Vancouver+franchise+announcement+could+come+next+week/1392030/story.html]http://www.canada.com/Vancouver+franchi ... story.html[/url]

Vancouver MLS franchise announcement could come next week

Canwest News Service March 15, 2009

VANCOUVER - The Vancouver Whitecaps could be awarded a Major League Soccer franchise by as early as mid-week.

Discussions between the defending United Soccer Leagues' First Division champions and North America's premier soccer loop continue to progress, and barring a setback over the next few days, an official announcement could come as early as Wednesday.

Vancouver has long been rumoured to be granted one of two expansion teams for the 2011 season.

The Whitecaps' bid is the strongest of the four remaining candidates - which include Ottawa, Portland and St. Louis - and recently jumped to the top of the list of potential suitors with Miami's decision to withdraw from the running earlier this month. Atlanta and Montreal also dropped out of the bid process.

While Local radio reports on Friday indicated a deal between the Whitecaps and MLS was in place, club president Bob Lenarduzzi said that just isn't the case.

They're premature,'' said Lenarduzzi. We're still talking. It's not done. We're hopeful, but as of right now it's not done.''

Vancouver Sun