The City of Calgary and the Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation (CSEC) have agreed to begin formal discussions with a fresh start towards a new event centre.

“We’re at the beginning of an important stage,” said Councillor Sonya Sharp, chair of the Event Centre Committee. “A new event centre for our city will attract investment and international events. It will have enormous benefits for visitors and for Calgarians. We look forward to working with CSEC for our mutual benefit and for a result that works for everyone.”

This milestone could not have happened without the efforts of the third party, whose team included Guy Huntingford, John Fisher, and Phil Swift, along with The City’s Event Centre Team and CSEC.

“We appreciate the efforts of Guy, John and Phil,” said John Bean, President and CEO of CSEC. “All parties share a collective desire to see a new event centre constructed in Calgary. We look forward to discussions with The City to see if we can find an acceptable path forward.”

With CSEC and The City now entering formal discussions, The City’s third party have fulfilled their mandate and their work has concluded. Moving forward, The City will now be represented by CAA ICON, who are experts in structuring deals for major sports and entertainment venues in North America and Europe. CAA ICON will have local support from Altus Group’s Calgary office.

CAA ICON has experience representing municipalities, as well as sports teams, in structuring deals and developing financing plans for event centres, stadiums and other public assembly facilities. They bring insight from many successful projects in a broad variety of markets.

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“This new team has the right expertise to get the best outcome possible for Calgary,” said Sharp. “Our environment has changed quite a bit over the past couple years. With everything we have learned, I am confident that CAA ICON representing The City is our best path forward and reflects how important this project is.”

The City and CSEC have agreed time is of the essence to reach a formal agreement on a new event centre, while ensuring they take the time necessary to reach an agreement that will meet The City and CSEC’s needs.

“I must emphasize this point,” said Stuart Dalgleish, general manager of Planning and Development Services for The City. “We must do this right, which means we will need space and we will need time to work on a successful agreement. We will be keeping our discussions confidential and reporting to the Event Centre Committee when the time is right.”

The new facility will be a year-round community destination attracting people, events, investment and redevelopment/revitalization. Home to the Calgary Flames and other professional sport teams, the new event centre will host global and local art and entertainment events, and be an amenity for Calgarians and visitors to enjoy.

Featured image: Plans for a new Calgary Event Centre and arena were cancelled on January 1, 2022. (DIALOG + HOK)


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