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Katz criticizes flaws in stadium planning, design

City involved in process: province

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Investors Group Field has been damaged by water, and concerns have been raised about flaws in the stadium's design.

WAYNE GLOWACKI / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Enlarge Image

Investors Group Field has been damaged by water, and concerns have been raised about flaws in the stadium's design. Photo Store

Mayor Sam Katz said not enough attention was paid to key details of the design of Winnipeg’s new football stadium.

Katz said the flooding problems at Investors Group Field from the snow melt is another example of serious flaws in the structure’s design.

"In my opinion, there should have been much more time devoted to details which for some reason were overlooked," Katz said. "I have no explanation for it, we (city hall) weren’t involved with it but there’s no doubt in my mind that is the case."

The stadium’s design deficiencies include handrails that had to be replaced, uninsulated plumbing, crawlspaces that required fireproofing, and a press box open to the elements.

"With all due respect, that’s just poor planning. End of story. Poor planning," Katz said.

The Bombers said snow melting from the stadium roof has damaged luxury suites and the visitors’ dressing room but would not provide a cost estimate and declined repeated requests from the city’s media outlets to see the damage.

Katz said he was troubled that the Winnipeg Football Club and BBB Stadium Inc., the non-profit body responsible for its construction, refused to allow the media to inspect the facility after news of the flooding became public.

Katz said the stadium is a public facility paid for with tax dollars.

City involved in process: province

Katz's comment prompted the Selinger government to point out the city's involvement in IGF's construction as one of the four stakeholders in BBB Stadium, the entity that built the facility.

Former Winnipeg CAO Phil Sheegl was BBB Stadium's chairman throughout the construction process, said ‎Ron Lemieux, the provincial Minister of Tourism, Culture, Heritage, Sport and Consumer Protection.

Lemieux said he will not second-guess the Winnipeg Football Club's decision to prevent media from visiting the facility.

He repeated his assertion the new stadium is the best in Canada and was built far more cheaply than a similar facility planned for Regina.

 

aldo.santin@freepress.mb.ca

History

Updated on Wednesday, April 9, 2014 at 2:00 PM CDT: Adds comment from the province.

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