Company talking to board about bubble for Brebeuf
The Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board has chosen Nustadia Recreation to manage the artificial turf sports fields at St. Thomas More, Cardinal Newman and the new Bishop Ryan high schools.
“They had the most financially beneficial proposal for the board,” said HWCDS chair Pat Daly, who noted the board approved the three year contract about two weeks ago.
Daly said the deal will not cost the school board any money as Nustadia will look after the cost of maintenance, security, cleaning and promotion of the fields starting with the More field on Nov. 1.
The new artificial turf field at Newman offically opens on Friday and the turf at the new Bishop Ryan high school should be in place by next month.
Daly noted Nustadia has a great deal of expertise in operating sports facilities that the board does not have and he sees arrangements like this one becoming more common in the future.
Nustadia has built and operates a number of sports facilities in North America, including the Mohawk 4-Ice Centre in Hamilton, through community partnerships.
Edward Pavao, vice president of development at Nustadia, said the company plans to lease the fields to community sports groups on nights and weekends when they are not required by the school board.
“About 25 percent of the rentals will go back to Nustadia,” he said.
Daly added about 60 percent of the profits will be recouped by the school board which could amount to “hundreds of thousands of dollars over the term of the agreement.”
Nustadia was one of two bidders that responded to the board’s request for proposals.
Daly said the deal also gives Nustadia the option to run the field at St. Jean de Brebeuf pending the outcome of talks between the two sides on whether to build a bubble over the football field at the east Mountain high school next year.
Artificial turf is slated to go in at Brebeuf next spring.
Pavao said it will cost about $1 million to build the bubble and the cost would likely be shared by the private sector, including Nustadia, along with user groups such as area minor soccer and minor football organizations.