VIDEO: New Regina stadium to be completed for 2017
It's a touchdown. A new $278 million facility holding 33,000 seats --with the option of adding a roof in the future -- is being built in Regina and Rider nation will be paying for it a significant portion of the construction.
"Today is an outstanding day. We're getting 'er done," said Roger Brandvold, chair of the Roughrider board.
Brandvold is happy with the news that the government of Saskatchewan, City of Regina and the Saskatchewan Roughriders signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for a new stadium to be constructed on Evraz Place lands.
Designing of the stadium will begin immediately. Construction begins next year with the hopes it will be open by 2017.
The new stadium won't have a roof initially but will be designed to add one at a later date. Premier Brad Wall argues it makes the current build more affordable to wait.
"It's very much worth that exploration to do whatever we can to make that possible thinking long term," said Wall.
The City of Regina is contributing $73 million, the provincial government is pitching in $80 million and the Riders will raise $25 million through sponsorship and naming rights.
"I think it's reasonable and I think it's fair," said Regina Mayor Pat Fiacco, who is hailing the success of the partnership in coming up with this agreement.
What it also means is Rider fans are facing a $4 increase on an already $8 facility fee. Over 30 years, that will help pay back a $100 million loan the City of Regina is taking from the provincial government to build the stadium.
"Once people see the type of facility we have, I think they will be more than happy to pay," said Fiacco.
Roger Brandvold explains what the money collected from ticketholders has been used for so far.
"That funds have enabled us to put together significant improvements to Mosaic (stadium), including what you see going on out there today," said Brandvold.
"It will increase slightly, but it's not something that's new to our fans and I think it's a tremendous use of our fans."
Taxpayers won't be completely off the hook for this new stadium. Over 30 years, the City of Regina will generate $300 million through a 0.45 per cent increase on property taxes each year for ten years.
"We've done all the math on this. We recognize what the operating costs are going to be and that's why the facility fee is so important to reduce the burder on the property taxpayers," said Fiacco.
To operate the new stadium over the first 30 years will cost $675 million which will be paid for through a mix of those property tax increases, interest raised, sponsorship and other revenue. (Right now, it costs $800,000 a year to run Mosaic Stadium.)
Premier Brad Wall, Fiacco, Brandvold and others spoke to the crowd of over 32,000 gathered in Mosaic Stadium for the Roughriders game against the B.C. Lions.
"The status quo is not on," said Wall.
Edited by News Talk Radio's Courtney Mintenko and Karen Brownlee.
The red pin marks the location of the new stadium. The green pin marks the location of the current Mosaic Stadium. The yellow pin marks the CP rail yards which was once considered as a possible location for the stadium to be built.