I am happy to put my support behind the new deal structure for the Event Centre. It was disappointing for all parties when the previous deal fell through. Council’s renewed commitment in January 2022 allowed to negotiations to restart with a fresh vision. I’m encouraged by the new agreement which considers the needs of all parties, including community as well as the contributions of partners, including the Province.
The deal gives Calgarians long term certainty that will realize a long term return on investment, allowing Calgary to plan for future investment into all of Calgary, not just the Rivers District and Downtown.
Important aspects of the new deal include:
Through good fiscal management, the City is well positioned to support the deal structure. While the upfront investment from the City is larger, it will not compromise our ability to continuously invest in other city assets. No tax increases are required, and no new debt financing is required.
It is important that all Calgarians can see how they benefit from this deal. The outcome of this project provides opportunities for all Calgarians and visitors to our city to gather and experience events and entertainment in the downtown. Whether festivals, concerts, community gatherings, cheering on sporting events, or enjoying the surrounding amenities, the improvements outside the event centre will provide equitable opportunities for people who visit the area and enjoy Calgary’s Rivers District and Culture + Entertainment District.
I am committed to working closely with administration and my council colleagues to ensure our return on investment through lease payments, new tax revenue, and other financial returns, are purposefully reinvested into community infrastructure.
I’d like to thank all parties involved for their time, openness, and commitment to the future of Calgary’s culture and entertainment district.