The Calgary Flames ownership groups want a new arena and wants the city of Calgary to help pay for construction costs.
It became obvious in June 2016 that things were not going well in the Calgary Flames ownership’s bid to not only build a new arena for the National Hockey League team but for an entire project called Calgary Next that would include a new Canadian Football League stadium for the Stampeders and a field house. A Calgary columnist is now pointed out that Kanye West was going to skip Calgary on his fall tour and was going to play the new building in Edmonton as well as a newer building in Winnipeg. It seems that Calgary may be on the it’s an old building list and why should we play there when newer buildings can generate more revenues. Calgary’s building was too old for Kanye West.
In June, the Calgary Flames ownership sent out a letter to season ticket holders in which the ownership said they have accepted an offer to look at Plan B. In other words, the Flames group was not going to be able to get a significant amount of loonies out of the Calgary city government to help cover the listed cost of $1.8 billion Canadian to build. Flames ownership countered that it would cost closer to a billion loonies not what the city planners think. In any event, the Flames ownership was studying the other proposal. But Flames ownership really did not knock down the city’s estimated $1.8 billion Canadian cost and there may have been a reason. Stadium and arena projects never cost what the team owners’ sticker price says. There are always cost overruns and more importantly there is always the old we have to pay down the debt and depending on the mechanism used to borrow money for funding the project, payment on the interest of the debt always adds to the cost of the project which in this case is more than just the arena. Kanye West will have have to wait a bit to play in a new Calgary arena. There seems to be no Plan B.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman was recently in Calgary to lobby for funding for a new Flames arena.