HAMILTON, Ont. — It may be time for Plan B if Hamilton city council fails to agree soon on a site for a new stadium, say organizers of the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games.
On Wednesday, council voted down Mayor Bob Bratina’s motion to pursue Confederation Park as a potential site for the stadium, which would be a venue for soccer during the Games.
It’s just the latest of several suggested sites that have failed to win approval from the council as a Feb. 1 deadline nears.
Ian Troop, CEO of Toronto 2015, said a “robust plan” is in place to ensure a soccer stadium is ready for the Games.
If Hamilton can’t meet its deadline, the organizers have a Plan B to make sure the Games are delivered “on time and on budget.”
Plan B could mean another southern Ontario municipality such as Mississauga, Brampton or Markham, would step in to provide the stadium site.
Despite the lack of agreement in Hamilton, organizers are looking forward to working with the city, which will be hosting cycling, soccer and volleyball at other venues, said Troop.
Hamilton’s council has been wrangling over the stadium site for months. All other debated sites have either been discounted as unaffordable to the city or, in the case of the West Harbour site, as unacceptable to the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats. The city could still iron things out, but time is quickly running out, said Troop.
“There’s some daunting challenges ahead of them,” he said. “We’re now back to where we were in May, where we have a site to be defined and we have to find where the money would come from to build a CFL stadium.”
“Those are two very big challenges that we don’t have very much time to resolve,” he added.
The Games will take place in the Greater Toronto Area, Hamilton and Welland, Ont.