New Calgary fieldhouse part of Olympic bid

It turns out there could be a new home for the Calgary Stampeders in the works.

It just requires Calgary to get awarded the Winter Olympics for a second time.

During a city council meeting on Monday, it was accidentally revealed that a fieldhouse is one of the major items as part of the ongoing Olympic bid process. The facility is budgeted for $272-million and would have a full-sized field for sports such as soccer, football, field hockey and lacrosse as well as running track. Part of the bid is also a refurbishing of McMahon Stadium, which you will remember was where the opening and closing ceremonies were held during the 1988 Olympics. The Calgary Bid Exploration Committee has said a Foothills fieldhouse would be used for curling and wheelchair events, which means there is one line in there about an ‘ice-plant’ being included in the project.

The timing seems curious for the ‘slip’ seeing as the Stamps are in Ottawa right now ready to contest for the Grey Cup for the third time in four seasons. The Stamps have had such on-field success in recent years it seems natural that the city would support them, and now it appears they have.

Over the past year and a half, the Calgary Flames organization, which owns the Stamps as well, has tried to get funding for a new arena and fieldhouse but have since thrown their hands up in frustration.

When city council turned to a Plan B for the arena project, it appeared the Stamps and their needs were being ignored.

It turns out they were part of a bigger plan – one that reaches a global scale.

Council has approved another $2-million to continue to bid exploration, with $1-million of that coming right away. Mayor Naheed Nenshi has said that it’s clear if Calgary chooses to bid for the 2026 Games, they will get them.

Now the city needs to decide whether it wants the Olympics, which would carry a lot of benefits to many others in Calgary, namely the Stampeders and their fans.

Ian Busby

Ian Busby

Ian Busby has covered the Stampeders and the CFL since 2003, with eight years as a beat reporter. He is now a producer at Breakfast Television.
Ian Busby
Ian Busby
About Ian Busby (175 Articles)
Ian Busby has covered the Stampeders and the CFL since 2003, with eight years as a beat reporter. He is now a producer at Breakfast Television.

21 Comments on New Calgary fieldhouse part of Olympic bid

  1. Flutiegarcia // November 22, 2017 at 10:15 am //

    So I assume the stamps would play in a renovated McMahon and not the actual field house. The field house based on the rendering provided would certainly not be adequate for the Stamps

  2. Paltry $50 million for the historic dump where the Stamps play? No new arena for the Flames? But a $224 million dollar field house most Calgarians will never set foot into. Why bother? Facilities for hockey & football will still be crap.

    • Flutiegarcia // November 22, 2017 at 10:19 am //

      New arena would still be on the books as perfore. Just not part of this specific plan. Would need to see what that money to buy in terms of upgrades before I decide whether it’s good or bad

  3. Flames going to end up in Seattle!

    • Flutiegarcia // November 22, 2017 at 10:28 am //

      The truth is the flames are going no where. If they were they’d already be gone

  4. Can someone explain why a field house is needed for the Winter Olympics?

    Based on the artists rendering, it looks more appropriate for the summer games.

    • Flutiegarcia // November 22, 2017 at 10:30 am //

      I was kinda wondering that myself. Maybe it will be used for something specific for the Olympics that can easily convert to a field house afterwards

    • “The Calgary Bid Exploration Committee has said a Foothills fieldhouse would be used for curling and wheelchair events”
      If they win the bid then the skating and ice hockey would be at the arena and they would need a large facility for Curling.

      Canada doesn’t need to fund another Winter Olympics, just too expensive. We taxpayers in the rest of the country should not be paying for field houses, arenas and renovated football stadiums for Calgary.
      If McMahon is only used for the Opening and Closing ceremonies then they can use the existing stadium.
      Other countries that have hosted in the past have had their ceremonies outside in temporary stands.

      • George Porge // November 22, 2017 at 4:51 pm //

        You don’t have to worry about “you taxpayers” paying for a field house for Calgary. Alberta contributes more to the Federal coffers than we get in return. The reality is that we’re merely begging the federal overlords to give us some of our own money back.

        • Lancaster/Reed // November 22, 2017 at 9:29 pm //

          Don’t hold your breathe. Quebec ‘s hand is permanently stuck out and they always get first dibs. Besides, Justin has more terrorists he will be giving $millions to .

  5. The chances of Calgary being awarded the Winter Olympics again in our lifetime is slim to none. They’re going to have to come up with another scheme to build that fieldhouse, perhaps through private funding.

    • Flutiegarcia // November 22, 2017 at 11:07 am //

      I think Calgary would have an excellent chance of getting them. The question is SHOULD we pursue them? I vote no personally. Cost vs long term benefit being one issue, another is my reluctance to get have to sign on with the corrupt IOC

    • But the “Fieldhouse” is not designed for a home for the Stamps, it’s a track & field facility with around 10k seats and could be used for the new soccer team.

    • BigRedMachine // November 22, 2017 at 12:03 pm //

      As the mayor has said, if Calgary submitted a bid it would have an excellent chance of winning it. It seems to only make economic sense for countries to bid on them these days if they have existing facilities they can utilize. The big question is whether or not it is the right thing to do with taxpayer’s money.

    • Lancaster/Reed // November 22, 2017 at 12:57 pm //

      Never say never. It depends on who else is bidding. A lot of cities/countries are not bidding anymore as it is simply to expensive for the host . Funding from the IOC is nowhere near adequate to offset the majority if the costs. Greedy bastards.

  6. Lots nice

  7. Looking nice

  8. greenenvy? // November 22, 2017 at 2:45 pm //

    The NHL doesn’t want to move franchises. They want the entry cash for a new franchise in Seattle. The owners will never move an existing franchise to a free spot because of the cash a startup brings in. Bettman wanted Seattle in the league with the Golden Knights but Seattle turned it down. It may eventually happen but Quebec City was the only other team with the appetite to pay the franchise fee at the time. Bettman clearly prefers to get Seattle. He’ll threaten Calgary but it makes no sense for the NHL to relocate them.

  9. Proposed field house looks like it would be a nice practice facility for the Stamps. Beyond that I see no purpose for it in a football sense. Stamps and Flames both deserve totally remodeled 21st century arenas and stadiums at the very least but new ones would be even better if the numbers work out better. They should follow the Ottawa concept that benefited the entire area and city.

  10. The last thing Canada needs is to host another Olympic Games- a colossal waste of money not to mention having to fork over tax dollars so Calgary can have new facilities. Don’t get me wrong, I love the Olympics but it’s getting really hard to justify them!!

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