Calgary Flames building new publicly-owned event centre

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The City of Calgary has reached agreements with the Province of Alberta, Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation and Calgary Stampede to build a new publicly-owned modern Event Centre.

Located in The Rivers District, this milestone will anchor a vibrant entertainment destination for with several new public amenities.

“This project is another signal to the market that Calgary is making strong investments in its future,” said Calgary Mayor Jyoti Gondek. “The partnership approach we have taken accomplishes two things: we are building an event centre, and we are also creating the public amenities needed within the Rivers District to build community and enhance quality of life for all Calgarians.”

“Make no mistake, this project is about more than just a single building. It’s fulfilling our vision of a home for culture, sports, and entertainment. It’s a vital investment in our city’s future prosperity, vibrancy and growth,” says chair of the Event Centre Committee, Councillor Sonya Sharp. “A little over a hundred years and 1.3 million people later, we have a new Big Four – four partners committed to building a community hub that will serve us for generations to come”

The project includes improvements that support Calgary’s downtown plan and the future Culture and Entertainment District:

  • New mobility connection: A new 4-lane underpass under the CP train tracks with wide sidewalks at 6th Street S.E., providing pedestrian, wheeling, and vehicle connections
  • Community rink: Shared facility for public booking and training facility for CSEC teams with seating for 1,000
  • Outdoor and indoor gathering spaces: More opportunity for community events onsite and in The District
  • Event centre: New City-owned building, capable of accommodating “A-class” events and additional hosting space on a 10-acre parcel of land
  • Street and public realm improvements: Improvements to 5 Street S.E and 15, 17 and 25 Avenues S.E.
  • Land: Potential commercial development parcels that can accelerate development and growth in Calgary’s downtown core and The District\

The new rink will be home for the Calgary Flames.

“The Calgary Stampede has enjoyed having the Calgary Flames as a neighbour since they arrived in 1980,” said Stampede CEO, Joel Cowley. “We are honoured and excited to be a partner in this development that will contribute to a world-class landscape for our Calgary community.

“When combined with other developments, both existing and planned, an event centre complex of this magnitude will provide an anchor to attract and host the world in Calgary’s Culture + Entertainment District.”

Having already attracted more than $3 billion of private investment to date, the Rivers District has momentum. The agreements position the Event Centre to be a complementary anchor to the BMO Centre Expansion and together, these two modernized facilities will work with other improvements in the area, such as 17 Avenue S., Victoria Park Station, Central Library and Studio Bell, as well as the Arts Commons Transformation, to support and contribute to Calgary’s downtown recovery. It will be a place where visitors and a whole new generation of Calgarians will make lifelong memories.

The cost will be shared among public and private investment partners as follows:

  • City: $537.3 million to fund the development of the Event Centre, parking structure, the enclosed plaza, and 25% of the community rink.
  • CSEC:  $40 million upfront and $17 million per year (increasing 1 per cent per year) over 35 years
  • Province: $300 million to fund transportation improvements, land, infrastructure and site enabling costs, including off-site and on-site utility servicing costs, public realm and site clearing/demolition

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