Calgary arena deal dead? Mayor and Flames confirm it’s an undone deal

CALGARY –

Mayor Jyoti Gondek said in Facebook and Twitter posts early Tuesday evening that Calgary Flames owner Murray Edwards told her the team intends to pull the plug on the Event Centre Deal.

Gondek said that since she was elected mayor, city administration and her office have been working to mitigate any extra costs on top of the already agreed to $650 million project, identifying climate mitigation of around $4 million and right of way issues of $12 million.

The city agreed to cover 40 per cent of that, but apparently it wasn’t enough for the Flames.

“The City came to the table to assist with $6.4m in roadways leaving $9.7m for the Flames,” Gondek wrote. “Based on this gap of $9.7m, I am told CSEC is walking away from our deal.”

“I am disappointed,” Gondek said, continuing. “On a project worth over $650m, to have one party walk away for 1.5 per cent of the value of the deal is staggering.

“I wanted Calgarians to be the first to know. I am as disappointed as all of you that this is the way things are ending.”

The city released a document showing a breakdown of the Event Centre deal

CTV News reached out to the Flames for comment. At 11:30 p.m., the Flames issued a statement confirming that they were pulling out of the deal.

“At this point,” they wrote, “it is clear that the City and CSEC have been unable to resolve a number of issues relating to the escalating costs of the project.

“Accordingly, as the City and CSEC have been unable to resolve these issues, CSEC has determined that there is no viable path to complete the Event Centre project.”

The statement reiterated what Gondek told the media earlier Tuesday, adding that uncertainty surrounding supply chain issues, rising commodity prices and possible continued cost escalation made the project unviable.

“While not ideal for Calgarians nor competitively for the Flames, the people of Calgary should understand that nevertheless CSEC’s intentions are to remain in the Scotiabank Saddledome,” it concluded.

“We are deeply disappointed with the outcome.”

This is a developing story…

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