Ticats waiting for word on progress of delayed stadium
Danger of the stadium not being ready for Aug. 16 home game
The Hamilton Tiger-Cats are anxiously awaiting word Thursday afternoon about whether they’ll be able to get in the new Tim Hortons Field stadium by their Aug. 16 home game.
Representatives from the various organizations involved in the new stadium met in Toronto Thursday to discuss the future opening date of the stadium, which is already a month overdue. Officials were not speaking after the Thursday meeting but are promising an update Friday.
The Ticats played their first home game at the 6,000-seat McMaster University stadium, and will play their second one there Thursday night. But there’s still no word on whether they’ll get to play their third one in the $145-million, 22,500-seat Pan Am stadium.
“We’re waiting to hear, just like you,” team president Glenn Gibson said Thursday afternoon.
“I can’t speculate until I know what they decided upon today.”
Ontario Sports Solutions (OSS), the consortium building the stadium, met with the city of Hamilton and Infrastructure Ontario Thursday to update them on construction. There will be a public statement Friday on the stadium’s progress, said city spokesperson Mike Kirkopoulos.
Stadium construction started last year. In January, the builders said they were first two, then six weeks behind schedule, citing a winter ice storm and problems with subcontractors.
Builders then estimated the stadium would be finished by the first home game on July 26. OSS now says the stadium will not be substantially completed until weeks before the end of the CFL season.
With each game delay, OSS pays the Ticatsup to $1 million. The CFL team also missed out on being broadcast on ESPN’s main network this month.
OSS says there are about 580 workers on site each day. Infrastructure Ontario is holding back $89 million of the $119-million payment until the stadium is finished.