Markham arena project dead?

2 Comments

From the Canadian Press:

City council in Markham, Ont., voted 11-2 Wednesday night against using any public funds to build an NHL-sized arena.

The vote effectively kills a proposed financial framework with businessman Graham Roustan, the CEO of GTA Sports and Entertainment.

The proposed plan was to have Roustan’s company put up half of the cost, $162.5 million, for a 20,000 set arena while the city would cover the other half.

But it’s not quite the end of the story, according to the Markham Economist & Sun:

An amendment that gave GTA Sports & Entertainment  or, notably, any other private partners six months to come forward with proof of funds for the full $325-million to finance the project was carried in a vote of 12-1…

The proposed arena — with no guarantee of an NHL tenant — has been a highly controversial topic in the Toronto suburb, with some in the media, as well as local residents, coming down hard on the project, in particular the financial framework of the project.

From the Globe and Mail:

Roustan can still pursue an arena deal, but without any financial guarantees from the city, his proposed GTA Centre is on life support. However, he said he can still come up with $162.5-million and hopes the anonymous developers who were part of the second MOU or other private investors can provide the rest.

But, he admitted, if no other investors surface in six months “yeah, it’s over. It’s always been that way.

Related: Bettman mum on expansion, but Quebec City makes too much sense