Re: Expansion Commissioner

If it really were that easy?, it wouldn't have taken Regina how many years to get their new stadium???

It's not easy. Nothing that expensive and decent of quality is easy to get built.

The Winnipeg project was done on a whim - basically after Winnipeg "entrepreneur" David Asper's consortium of local criminals and real-estate freebie takers were proven not to have a penny of private capital to insert into the widely touted project. It was brought to the slobbish premier (Selinger) who by that time was almost totally mentally dysfunctional. Selinger initially OK'd approx. 150 million in people's money - parsing it as 'repayable according to the Winnipeg Football Club business plan' within 40 years. Of course it was a ruse - the stadium will eventually go into a form of default and the public investment will be written off - as it looks rather ugly on the government books. Just kick the can forward on repayment, that's all they're doing!

Winnipeg's facility is rife with design and construction flaws - both by using inexperienced architects and construction companies who deployed inferior contractors to build the thing. The current tab sits in the 240 to 260 million range - and counting as they find more design and production flaws. The main one being poor access for rock band production trucks.

The location is also difficult for access during weekday and early evening games as its on a primary Winnipeg traffic artery.


Okay I doubt any new team will pay 260 million for a stadium .

Let's get realistic with a Saputo stadium at 60 million complete with everything you need for a CFL team and possible soccer team in Halifax . Again a stadium is part of the puzzle but a stadium does not need to be ridiculous priced to start out with to get a team .

The money for expansion fee can be an on going debit held by the league . The stadium could be built with sponsorship and the 25 million the city was willing to give to anybody willing to join them .The team can start as a community team with start up costs by sponsors who contribute but do not own the team which is exactly what Irving and McCain have already expressed they don't want to own but are willing to contribute to valid plan.

This is a big fail for the CFL who don't seem to want to do any real leg work to have the team operational . I am sure you can acquire a board of citizens and a CFL advisor to assist in on going logistics in a modest 20 - 25 million dollar a year team which is only twice as big as some CHL teams which operate the same way .

This is just laziness and continued failure to look outside at a big pocketed philanthropist to get things done which is asinine way of developing a league that has three community teams and had three to four others before going private . The CFL is just that a community league viable only thru community goodwill or it would have ceased to operate a long long time ago .

Just to add to the IGF situation.

I feel sometimes when you have a deadline and delays, there is a push.

In other words " get it done and no excuses "

I know they had a big problem with wind. The construction cranes had delays because of dangerous high winds.

I have to wonder if in order to make the deadline, they cut so many corners they ended up with the structure and financial mess they have today.

The wind problem was documented , but the corner cutting is speculation on my part.

However, when they have to spend $$$$$$ and go back to fix and repair, I think that would be part of the reason.

Given supposed costs of recent stadium builds, anything less than $150M would be a very minimalistic design.

So, you're saying the league should actually take on the debt for an expansion - good luck getting the governors on board with that. The CFL should not and will not take on debt voluntarily for an expansion as that could bankrupt the entire league due to one failure.

Financing for a stadium and team startup via sponsorship and community shareholders is already open to anyone to pursue - but it takes a few big-time contributors to get the ball rolling - no sign yet that anyone is willing to put their money where their mouth is.

Actually, the fact that private owners with deep pockets have stepped-in over the last several years shows the opposite - community ownership isn't a viable way to fund a new team. The goodwill may be there - but the cash isn't.

Nope not saying they take on any debt not sure where your reading that . I said the expansion fee can be deferred and held in increments . NO DEBT just no need to obtain a fee for expansion ]when setting up a community team .

The governors right now are more enlightened and realize that a 5th team in the East especially on the east coast is important . Not having leadership at the head office and by the governors that to obtain this 5th team is a matter of working with corporate support and civic leaders who wish to be involved like many CHL and CFL teams requires the novel idea of the CFL playing a bigger role in making it happen instead of waiting for a large pocketed owner to want to own a team in a small market .

No PRIVATE owner in the CFL is looking at franchise values skyrocketing but see the league as a viable enterprise
much like our CHL owners . It is done on a philanthropist model where any meager profits are either saved for a rainy day or placed directly back in sustaining the team or stadium .

Maybe some day there will be a greater value on franchises but I can tell you right now by sitting on your ass and waiting for money to fall from the sky it won't happen . The only debt or money the CFL should occur is finally getting a video game established whether thru the Winter group or EA set up in BC .

What's needed is an approach first that their are civic leaders willing to put in the time to bring a team and make decisions on hiring and setting up a team . What the league office would do would be assign one or two individuals that have a CFL background in logistics and team building so the private citizens are not overwhelmed much like you would do if you bought a Macdonald,s franchise .

Second while this is established you need SEED money and this is where sponsorships are important . There are big players on the East coast that have the funds to get that stadium built like the Saputo model but with artificial turf and civic/college usage especially when you need the city and province on board as partners .

These same sponsors could be tapped with first season coverage which would be required until profits for the first year are brought in .

On going support thru stadium name rights and buying ads / suites etc ... could be established in a business plan for a non profit football franchise on the East Coast .  

It involves Leadership and support from the governors which for the last 50 years has been lacking . Maybe this is why Cohon was dumped maybe he was getting close to the solution and you have some small minds that don't understand sometimes you have to be willing to look in the mirror and realize this is a heavily reliant community Pro League whether you are in BC or Regina or Halifax .

Big thing that's missed here is another franchise or 2 should add value to the league. Owners should ask about 5 to 10 million dollars per team per expansion team.So 5 million x 9 = $45 million. Look at Las Vegas franchise in NHL. 500 mil.
Should have newer stadium with all bells and whistles that seats minimum 32,000 with easy expansion to 40,000.
Have people that love football and ACTUALLY want a franchise with sponsors lined up to participate.

Now this is a ultimate scenario that may happen or not one day. Does this eliminate Quebec city, Halifax, Moose Jaw, Yellowknife, Fort Mac, Victoria, Humboldt ???? YES on ALL ACCOUNTS.

New NFL deal with CFL is coming around again. Development League, Possible!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Or continue with 8/9 teams for next 25 years.. Things have changed from few years back.

None of the teams in the East have 32,000 seat stadiums . The average attendance for the league is 24,000 . The NFL deal last time was an emergency loan because the league was going to collapse . What kinda deal would they like with CFL who develop players UNDER sized for the NFL . The CFL is it's own league and any form of a development league would kill fan interest . It's bad enough we lose good players to the NFL now to sit usually on a practice squad or injury reserve .

Halifax and Quebec City is not comparable to Moose Jaw or Yellowknife . I don't think one more team in the East is going to be like climbing Everest .

I think you have to realistic there are hardly any big pockets lining up for the three big city teams . This is the CFL where you have Hamilton and Regina . If you were to start the CFL in either of these towns where there has NEVER been a team you would have exactly I repeat exactly the same problem as Halifax does today . NO Stadium and NO owners lining up to put a team in the CFL in either little Regina or Hamilton and Ottawa for that matter .

This may be an easier conversation once the 2026 World Cup bid has been decided in May 2020. If Canada wins, you would have to think that Halifax would finally come on board (with loads of government money, since govt loves one-time international events). However, since the tournament has been expanded to 48 teams, you would have to think that it would be joint with at least the USA, meaning only established stadiums in major metropolitan areas would host.

It could be a North American bid, therefore Mexico might also be included. Halifax ... it won't happen.

So, how long until a CFL to San Diego thread starts up? lol

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The way that the tournament is going to be set up will still only require 12 stadiums. I think the idea of Canada joining a U.S. bid is more wishful thinking on the part of some Canadians. The U.S. doesn't need anyone else to help host. They have individual states that could almost host the tournament on their own.
I can't see a Canadian bid being successful, but it would be nice to at least see a serious bid. Our bid could use the 9 CFL stadiums (exchanging Molson for Olympic), the SkyDome, and new stadiums in Halifax and Quebec City. Calgary might also need a new stadium, as McMahon is getting up there in age, and with it's relatively tight sidelines, might not be able to accommodate the wider soccer pitch. If possible, I would also like to see if a new stadium could be built in Montreal to host the final that could be scaled back to a 40k baseball stadium after the event to possibly lure MLB back to the city. I am thinking along the lines of what Atlanta did with their '96 Olympic stadium.

When you build a stadium normally you project population growth. 25,000 seats at 2% growth over 25 years!!!!!!!!!!
That is being forward and aggressive.

Comparing cities is just a phrase. Yes some are bigger but not a draw at all. So place the team in a city that wants a CFL team. Give a real list. For example Victoria BC or Halifax would be included in the do not want category.

Hope not.

I remember last year there was a guy on here from STL , trying to sell how wonderful the CFL would be .

These US cities that feel screwed, need to just go form their own spring league and stay out of our business.

US expansion failed once and it would be stupid to even think to try it again.

Expansion should not be a priority for the CFL at this time.

The concern needs to be getting more fans in the seats in Vancouver and Toronto.

I live on PEI. I went to all the Touchdown Atlantic games held in Moncton. Moncton is 2 hours from PEI, and 2 hours from Halifax (it was a central location). By the 2nd. last Touchdown Atlantic game, the attendance already dwindled ... the interest was diminished.
Halifax is not central enough for such a sparse Maritime CFL population ... I know I couldn't go to too many games in Halifax ... 4 hrs. there, 4 hrs. back, travelling time.
Hate to be a downer, but if Halifax ever got a CFL team, I could see it going the same way, down the crapper for lack of interest.
The east coast is also much like Toronto's current sports population ... hockey, baseball, & NFL are king.

I agree with everyone no expansion it never works Canadian's hate the CFL especially on the east coast and Toronto . The CFL doesn't work just fold the league .

Yep that's what I here from everyone who doesn't understand the meager economics of a CFL franchise . The CFL again I repeat myself is a small time league and is not too big for the likes of Halifax , Hamilton or Regina . The funny thing is it's the big cities that are hurting the most in attendance so please get with the program . It's laziness shear laziness from the small 9 CFL governors that live on week to week basis for so long they don't know how to invest time , energy and money to bring growth to commerce you have Monopoly in that already has ritualization from an existence since 1958 and long before that in an small east /west league .

Sorry but if hear one person that doesn't spend some time to check out the CFL's economic barometer it is mainly run like a junior hockey team . Yes there are added expenses but they are offset by the higher profits from TV and gate receipts and sponsorships but in essence they are no where near a NHL or NFL organizational ledger line .
They need community stadiums like JR hockey needs community arenas . The boards in many of the teams are not paid and actually require community staff and volunteers in order to exist .

If you want to grow the league within it's borders you need to infiltrate all markets not served and expand the footprint in future media like games , gambling and on line access like we are doing here today only much more advanced . The CFL for the time being is still able to pull of this miracle with no competition other than those craving for the US league that drives them to the border cities and beyond as far as Dallas to see the Cowboys or off to Pittsburgh to see the Steelers .

The miracle will not continue without ritualization of the time appointed games whether it's thru family , friends or just past experience . It is that simple . The CFL existence can be credited to a controlled expense line for players that is now so low it is sometimes reads to one total CFL team's expenses to one players salary in the majors . I am sorry but that is not exactly a league that is TOOOOO big for Halifax , Quebec City , Ottawa or Regina .

Please tell me what pro league does Halifax have right now that needs a nearly 11,000 seat arena . I doubt you can make any case for an arena that big for Halifax but it exists . There are no major players not even Braley who was worth over a billion who could build his own CFL only stadium .

I should point out that I am not angry at Liquor Kitty's quote I am just frustrated with the League and leadership on this issue .

I'm sure solid-state 22,500 to 25,000 basic stadiums could be set up for under $175 million in places like Halifax, Moncton, London & Saskatoon.

Basically the formula would be 1/3 federal govt., 1/3 provincial and 1/3 private sector with local municipalities kicking in deals on land and services (ie. parking, power, plumbing, etc.)

Trouble is most Canadian businessmen wouldn't touch the CFL from a stadium investment point of view - I think dribbles of private money went into the Ottawa and Hamilton projects - but only dribbles! The average Canadian businessmen would feign a coma to dis-engage from stadium investment talks.

Sadly, Joe Greedy (the average Canadian multi-millionaire or near billionaire) is probably correct from an analytical assessment. Returns on such facilities are usually measured in civic convenience and pride, possible returns on tax revenues from GST generation (on tickets, boxes, merchandise, etc.). Cities usually have abdicated their tax assessment powers on such facilities, too! Joe Greedy can't see a route to profit so he basically rows away from these kind of islands.

But on a 1/3 formula that would mean 58 million from feds, 58 mill. from province and 58 mill. from a combination of civic and private businessmen - a doable deed.

Even if you had to get 20 businessmen to invest 1.5 million each to raise 30 million local funds. It would mean quite a bit to see private greedies putting in real money into such facilities. Such types of partnerships would also assure adequate construction oversight - so that runaway money trains like IGF in Winnipeg wouldn't occur.

I don't think we're going to have any more examples of a demented and sick premier funding an entire project with taxpayer funds (like in Manitoba). The 3 or 4 level model has to be the route - even if the community funds it with taxpayer bonds or somesuch!

I would LOVE a franchise in Halifax, but under what economic or political model would the feds and the province be willing to kick in $60M each for a facility that would get used maybe 20 times a year, and only 10 times with any prospect of a decent revenue-producing crowd? Maybe if there was a major international event like Pan-Am Games but just for a CFL team? Can't see any politician getting behind such an idea these days.

Left out something:
Not only is the population of the Maritimes sparse and spread out, but the average yearly salary and employment rate of people living here is below the rest of Canada's. Therefore, only a small segment of CFL fans might have the $$$ to attend/travel to games.