Stadium won't be finished until after the CFL season
'I don't believe anything they tell me anymore,' Lloyd Ferguson says
The new Tim Hortons Field stadium won’t be finished until the end of November—after the season is over and after the Ticats last possible home playoff game.
And one city official says he doubts it’ll even be ready by then. Once councillor said he is "disgusted" by the construction process.
The stadium was initially supposed to be finished on June 30, and has had numerous missed deadlines since. Infrastructure Ontario now estimates a “substantial completion” date of Nov. 28, said Gerry Davis, the city’s head of public works.
But Davis is skeptical that even that date will be met.
“To be honest, I don’t think they’ll hit it,” he said.
It’s supposed to be three strikes and you’re out. They’ve had six strikes. They’re out twice.- Lloyd Ferguson
“Based on what I’ve seen with respect to the work that needs to be done, and some of items still need to be adjusted, I have difficulty believing it.”
The city is “very frustrated,” Davis said. But its hands are tied.
Infrastructure Ontario has contracted Ontario Sports Solutions to build the $145-million stadium. The city only takes possession after the substantial completion date.
The new schedule means the stadium won't be finished in time for the last Hamilton Tiger-Cats home game on Nov. 8. It also won't be finished if the Ticats make it to the Nov. 23 eastern final.
- Builders changed Tim Hortons stadium designs mid-construction
- New Hamilton stadium 'substantial completion' by October 15
Coun. Lloyd Ferguson of Ancaster said he’s disgusted. Builders "have missed the entire season."
“I don’t believe anything they tell me anymore,” said Ferguson, who chaired the Pan Am subcommittee. “I’m so fed up.”
The deadline has changed six times since June 30, causing the Hamilton Tiger-Cats to play some of its home games at McMaster University.
The stadium hosts Ticats games now. The team also hosted at Keith Urban concert in September.
But some elevators aren’t finished, and much mechanical and electrical work is incomplete, Davis said.
IO initially said that an ice storm last winter put the project behind schedule, as well as issues with subcontractors. Others have charged that design issues played a part.
These delays are not related to weather or design, Davis said.
Ferguson said he doesn’t care the reasons for the delay.
“They didn’t do what they said they’re going to do,” he said. But “I don’t know what consequences we can put on them.”
“It’s supposed to be three strikes and you’re out. They’ve had six strikes. They’re out twice.”
The initial completion date was June 30, and was estimated to be finished with each new Ticats home game over the summer.
On Labour Day, the CFL team played its first game in the partially finished stadium. Builders then estimated it would be substantially complete by Oct. 15.