Hamilton on pace to bid for 2030 Commonwealth Games

News Nov 07, 2019 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Hamilton 100, the private sector group proposing to have the city host the 2030 Commonwealth Games, provided a few more details on what facilities will be needed to win the games next year, leaving councillors impressed, but still with nagging questions.

The proposal includes building three multi-sport complexes, with the largest being 98,000 square feet that will accommodate squash, badminton and eight basketball courts and will have retractable seats.

FirstOntario Place, its future uncertain as councillors consider demolishing it, could be incorporated into Hamilton 100’s plan, by hosting gymnastics, for example. A new convention centre, which is also being discussed by the city, would be used for boxing and hosting the media area.

Other existing venues would be used for the games, including Mohawk Sports Park for field hockey, Gage Park for indoor tennis, McMaster University for some swimming events and Confederation Park for indoor beach volleyball. Bayfront Park would be the location for the triathlon.

Some events would be held in other areas. Cycling, which would be held at the National Cycling Centre in Milton, diving at the Pan Am Sports Centre in Toronto and netball in Mississauga.

The proposal, said Hamilton 100 president P.J. Mercanti, would also include building residences in the east end and downtown to accommodate 1,500 games officials. He suggested to councillors during the Nov. 5 general issues committee meeting that once the event is over, the residences could be converted into affordable housing.

“We want to engage with the community to use the games to put a dent into affordable housing,” he said.

Mercanti said the group is budgeting up to $1.4 billion for the event, comparable to the 2018 games’ cost on Australia's Gold Coast, which was $1.8 billion, while the Glasgow, Scotland, games in 2014 and the 2022 games in Birmingham, England, are about $1.5 billion.

He said capital upgrades for the event are estimated to be roughly $450 million, while operational costs are about $950 million.

“This is an opportunity to regenerate and put a fresh face on Hamilton,” said Cecilia Carter-Smith, a member of the Hamilton 100 team.

Hamilton 100 and the city have only until January before Commonwealth Games Canada announces its shortlisted cities for the games. So far, Hamilton is the only Canadian city that has stated it will be making a bid for the 2030 Games, which would be the 100th anniversary of the event.

Mayor Fred Eisenberger, who supports hosting the games, said Hamilton remains a favourite to get the games based on its historical connection.

The games began in 1930 in Hamilton and were then called the British Empire Games.

Hamilton 100 must submit a hosting proposal document to Commonwealth Games Canada by Nov. 22. The organization will select its preferred city by March 31, 2020. If Hamilton is selected as the Canadian site, Commonwealth Games Canada and Hamilton 100 will submit an international bid.

Mike Zegarac, the city's corporate services general manager, said discussions with Hamilton 100 will iron out potential issues and responsibilities for the city, such as its financial and operational participation. He said by early January further details on Hamilton’s involvement in the bid will be provided to councillors.

Hamilton has already approved a memorandum of understanding with Hamilton 100 to seek the bid. The committee agreed to appoint three councillors to a working committee to continue discussions: Esther Pauls, Terry Whitehead and Judi Partridge.

In general, councillors applauded the opportunity the games could provide the city. But there remain unanswered questions, especially when it comes to the city’s financial contributions, who pays for any cost overruns, how much the province and federal governments will contribute and for Ward 5 Coun. Chad Collins, if Infrastructure Ontario will be involved.

He said after the fiasco of having Infrastructure Ontario oversee the construction of Tim Hortons Field for the 2015 Pan Am Games, including lawsuits, he will oppose any city involvement.

Mountain Coun. John-Paul Danko, who questioned the short timeline for staff to prepare the necessary documents, said after Mercanti’s presentation that “I have gone from skeptical to cautiously optimistic” about making a bid for the games.

Hamilton on pace to bid for 2030 Commonwealth Games

News Nov 07, 2019 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Hamilton 100, the private sector group proposing to have the city host the 2030 Commonwealth Games, provided a few more details on what facilities will be needed to win the games next year, leaving councillors impressed, but still with nagging questions.

The proposal includes building three multi-sport complexes, with the largest being 98,000 square feet that will accommodate squash, badminton and eight basketball courts and will have retractable seats.

FirstOntario Place, its future uncertain as councillors consider demolishing it, could be incorporated into Hamilton 100’s plan, by hosting gymnastics, for example. A new convention centre, which is also being discussed by the city, would be used for boxing and hosting the media area.

Other existing venues would be used for the games, including Mohawk Sports Park for field hockey, Gage Park for indoor tennis, McMaster University for some swimming events and Confederation Park for indoor beach volleyball. Bayfront Park would be the location for the triathlon.

Some events would be held in other areas. Cycling, which would be held at the National Cycling Centre in Milton, diving at the Pan Am Sports Centre in Toronto and netball in Mississauga.

The proposal, said Hamilton 100 president P.J. Mercanti, would also include building residences in the east end and downtown to accommodate 1,500 games officials. He suggested to councillors during the Nov. 5 general issues committee meeting that once the event is over, the residences could be converted into affordable housing.

“We want to engage with the community to use the games to put a dent into affordable housing,” he said.

Mercanti said the group is budgeting up to $1.4 billion for the event, comparable to the 2018 games’ cost on Australia's Gold Coast, which was $1.8 billion, while the Glasgow, Scotland, games in 2014 and the 2022 games in Birmingham, England, are about $1.5 billion.

He said capital upgrades for the event are estimated to be roughly $450 million, while operational costs are about $950 million.

“This is an opportunity to regenerate and put a fresh face on Hamilton,” said Cecilia Carter-Smith, a member of the Hamilton 100 team.

Hamilton 100 and the city have only until January before Commonwealth Games Canada announces its shortlisted cities for the games. So far, Hamilton is the only Canadian city that has stated it will be making a bid for the 2030 Games, which would be the 100th anniversary of the event.

Mayor Fred Eisenberger, who supports hosting the games, said Hamilton remains a favourite to get the games based on its historical connection.

The games began in 1930 in Hamilton and were then called the British Empire Games.

Hamilton 100 must submit a hosting proposal document to Commonwealth Games Canada by Nov. 22. The organization will select its preferred city by March 31, 2020. If Hamilton is selected as the Canadian site, Commonwealth Games Canada and Hamilton 100 will submit an international bid.

Mike Zegarac, the city's corporate services general manager, said discussions with Hamilton 100 will iron out potential issues and responsibilities for the city, such as its financial and operational participation. He said by early January further details on Hamilton’s involvement in the bid will be provided to councillors.

Hamilton has already approved a memorandum of understanding with Hamilton 100 to seek the bid. The committee agreed to appoint three councillors to a working committee to continue discussions: Esther Pauls, Terry Whitehead and Judi Partridge.

In general, councillors applauded the opportunity the games could provide the city. But there remain unanswered questions, especially when it comes to the city’s financial contributions, who pays for any cost overruns, how much the province and federal governments will contribute and for Ward 5 Coun. Chad Collins, if Infrastructure Ontario will be involved.

He said after the fiasco of having Infrastructure Ontario oversee the construction of Tim Hortons Field for the 2015 Pan Am Games, including lawsuits, he will oppose any city involvement.

Mountain Coun. John-Paul Danko, who questioned the short timeline for staff to prepare the necessary documents, said after Mercanti’s presentation that “I have gone from skeptical to cautiously optimistic” about making a bid for the games.

Hamilton on pace to bid for 2030 Commonwealth Games

News Nov 07, 2019 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Hamilton 100, the private sector group proposing to have the city host the 2030 Commonwealth Games, provided a few more details on what facilities will be needed to win the games next year, leaving councillors impressed, but still with nagging questions.

The proposal includes building three multi-sport complexes, with the largest being 98,000 square feet that will accommodate squash, badminton and eight basketball courts and will have retractable seats.

FirstOntario Place, its future uncertain as councillors consider demolishing it, could be incorporated into Hamilton 100’s plan, by hosting gymnastics, for example. A new convention centre, which is also being discussed by the city, would be used for boxing and hosting the media area.

Other existing venues would be used for the games, including Mohawk Sports Park for field hockey, Gage Park for indoor tennis, McMaster University for some swimming events and Confederation Park for indoor beach volleyball. Bayfront Park would be the location for the triathlon.

Some events would be held in other areas. Cycling, which would be held at the National Cycling Centre in Milton, diving at the Pan Am Sports Centre in Toronto and netball in Mississauga.

The proposal, said Hamilton 100 president P.J. Mercanti, would also include building residences in the east end and downtown to accommodate 1,500 games officials. He suggested to councillors during the Nov. 5 general issues committee meeting that once the event is over, the residences could be converted into affordable housing.

“We want to engage with the community to use the games to put a dent into affordable housing,” he said.

Mercanti said the group is budgeting up to $1.4 billion for the event, comparable to the 2018 games’ cost on Australia's Gold Coast, which was $1.8 billion, while the Glasgow, Scotland, games in 2014 and the 2022 games in Birmingham, England, are about $1.5 billion.

He said capital upgrades for the event are estimated to be roughly $450 million, while operational costs are about $950 million.

“This is an opportunity to regenerate and put a fresh face on Hamilton,” said Cecilia Carter-Smith, a member of the Hamilton 100 team.

Hamilton 100 and the city have only until January before Commonwealth Games Canada announces its shortlisted cities for the games. So far, Hamilton is the only Canadian city that has stated it will be making a bid for the 2030 Games, which would be the 100th anniversary of the event.

Mayor Fred Eisenberger, who supports hosting the games, said Hamilton remains a favourite to get the games based on its historical connection.

The games began in 1930 in Hamilton and were then called the British Empire Games.

Hamilton 100 must submit a hosting proposal document to Commonwealth Games Canada by Nov. 22. The organization will select its preferred city by March 31, 2020. If Hamilton is selected as the Canadian site, Commonwealth Games Canada and Hamilton 100 will submit an international bid.

Mike Zegarac, the city's corporate services general manager, said discussions with Hamilton 100 will iron out potential issues and responsibilities for the city, such as its financial and operational participation. He said by early January further details on Hamilton’s involvement in the bid will be provided to councillors.

Hamilton has already approved a memorandum of understanding with Hamilton 100 to seek the bid. The committee agreed to appoint three councillors to a working committee to continue discussions: Esther Pauls, Terry Whitehead and Judi Partridge.

In general, councillors applauded the opportunity the games could provide the city. But there remain unanswered questions, especially when it comes to the city’s financial contributions, who pays for any cost overruns, how much the province and federal governments will contribute and for Ward 5 Coun. Chad Collins, if Infrastructure Ontario will be involved.

He said after the fiasco of having Infrastructure Ontario oversee the construction of Tim Hortons Field for the 2015 Pan Am Games, including lawsuits, he will oppose any city involvement.

Mountain Coun. John-Paul Danko, who questioned the short timeline for staff to prepare the necessary documents, said after Mercanti’s presentation that “I have gone from skeptical to cautiously optimistic” about making a bid for the games.