Originally Posted by ajldub
I appreciate the fact that a stadium should be central, but what about the fact that two CFL teams there have shown to be not economically viable?
Whether or not the stadium hosts a CFL team should not dictate our decision to have a stadium in the first place. A centrally-located stadium, in addition, makes us a premium city. The aim should be to preserve the city's ability to host major-league sports or world-class sporting events in a central location.
Let me just speak of my own experience. I was a Riders fan, and a season-ticket holder for a couple of seasons when you could get $99 season tickets in the south stand upper deck, and I went to several Renegades games. This, despite 20-plus LOSING seasons. And throughout that time of team futility, they drew 20,000 a game (more early in the season, when hopes were still high, and less as time went on) - but on average we drew about the same as Montreal draws at their tiny Molson Stadium, and more than the Ti-Cats draw at Ivor Wynne most years (and some seasons, about the same as the Argos did in their cavernous stadium).
The fact that the two teams failed financially has nothing to do with the fans, who were out there supporting a LOSING and EMBARRASSING team for two-plus decades, with their money and their cheers. We the fans love football and will never cheer for any other city than ours at that sport.
The teams failed because of inept and indifferent ownership. Period. The CFL brass were idiots to let the Gliebermans back in as team owners, after having killed two teams. The fans here have been insulted and mistreated for so long, they are understandably jaded. The CFL, I've said it before, has to get on its knees and blow us an apology before they put a team back in this city, and they have to find an owner who is committed to winning. Otherwise, forget it. I love football, I like CFL ball, I'd love Ottawa to have a team back, but I'm sick of having doormat teams and having the name of our city associated with "losingness".
That's for the CFL. But, there are also events like the FIFA U-20 World Cup. I attended every game except one here at Lansdowne. It was an incredible tournament. I would not want my city to lose the ability to host events like this, which put Ottawa in front of 650 million TV viewers worldwide and kept us on the map as a major city, capable of hosting big sporting meets.
Personally, I would like Ottawa to get an MLS team (Major League Soccer) especially now that Toronto plays in that league. For that, again, we need a stadium.
And for all those things, the stadium needs to be central. I am NOT going to the sticks for a CFL game, I just won't, I'm sorry - it's Lansdowne or nothing. I'm fed up to the back teeth of the Senators parking jihad and I just won't put myself through that for summer sports, I want to be able to bike or walk to the game.
Plus - I played wintertime touch ball at the bubble there, I can tell you the place gets used every hour of every day and would be sorely missed as a community facility if it disappeared. Again, I am NOT going outside downtown to a facility like this, I want it close to me where it is and where it belongs.
So to recap: the stadium is for much more than the CFL and it's already there, so keep it there, renovate it, and keep the city in the running for sports events and teams. If someone gets a CFL team and makes it work, great. Otherwise, the place gets used already, it just needs refurbishment.