The future of Edmonton’s Northlands Coliseum became a little more uncertain this week as a new report to council found it would cost significantly less money to tear down the arena and build a new facility.
City councillors are expected to discuss the report’s findings on Tuesday and the debate comes at a critical time as the city, the Katz Group and Hockey Canada look to sign a memorandum of understanding about the building’s future use.
Last month, the city indicated it would support Hockey Canada’s vision of installing four sheets of ice, a running track, classrooms and other amenities to form a centre of excellence at the former home of the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers.
Watch below: On April 11, 2017, Vinesh Pratap filed this report about how the idea of converting Northlands Coliseum into a hockey academy centre with Hockey Canada has taken a big step forward.
This week’s report found the capital and operating costs of repurposing the arena “are significant and a purpose-built facility is very likely to be the more cost-effective option.”
“The current conceptual estimates of a repurposed Coliseum identify an order of magnitude premium on capital costs as high as 50 per cent as compared to previous estimates after incorporating the city’s sustainable building objectives,” the report said.
Last month, the cost of repurposing the facility was pegged at $102 million, based on the administration’s report on the proposal.