Cost of new Olympiques arena to exceed $100 million?
Gatineau Mayor Pedneaud-Jobin was displeased that someone in his administration leaked an internal document about the future home of the Gatineau Olympiques to a local radio station, which then revealed that the project’s costs could reach $104.5 million.
“We are in negotiations with a private partner; this could affect our ability to negotiate. The coward who did this should have the courage to attack me personally, instead of harming Gatineau,” declared the mayor. The document had been studied in-camera at city hall.
The radio station reported that the private group, Vision Multisports Outaouais (VMSO), would build a 4,000 seat arena with three additional ice surfaces, at a cost of $75 million. Additional infrastructure, such as parking, is estimated at $20 million.
According to the plan, the city would invest $32.5 million for the arena, the province $26.5 million, and VMSO $16 million.
The city would demolish the current Guertin Centre and the Beaudry, Baribeau et Campeau arenas in the Gatineau sector.
The mayor called for caution in interpreting the figures in the leaked document.
“This is a working document. The choice for the parkade remains undetermined, construction cost estimates are preliminary, the land purchase may not be necessary, and the sports committee still needs to evaluate demolishing the arenas, etc.,” stated Pedneaud-Jobin.
The mayor has asked the president of city council, Daniel Champagne, “to exhaust all resourses” to investigate this breach of confidentiality.