A new 4,000-seat sports complex to replace the city of Gatineau's aging Robert Guertin arena will cost $79 million and would open in the fall of 2020, a Gatineau city committee heard Monday.
The city's committee of the whole today heard more details about the agreement in principle reached with Vision Multisports Outaouais (VMSO) to replace the existing arena at 125 Rue de Carillon, the current home of the Gatineau Olympiques hockey team.
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VMSO's plans call for the building of a 4,000-seat arena for the Olympiques, as well as three community rinks at a new site across the street from Centre Sportif de Gatineau on Boulevard de la Cité.
Construction would last 30 months and the facility would open in the fall of 2020.
The total bill for the project would be $79 million, with VMSO paying $16 million, the city of Gatineau contributing $36.5 million and the province of Quebec providing $26 million.
Those costs wouldn't include an additional $25 million needed to construct a six-storey parking garage and make infrastructure improvements to nearby sidewalks and streets, costs that would be borne by the city.
To meet the needs of the future complex, it is expected there would need to be 1,560 parking spaces in the area.
At present, the Robert Guertin arena has between 800 and 900 parking spaces.
Council to vote on deal Wednesday
In addition to parking, some councillors expressed concern about nightly traffic in the area.
The city will have to carry out a traffic impact study and work with the Société de transport de l'Outaouais on special packages to and from the arena.
A special meeting of city council will vote on Wednesday as to whether the city will enter into a memorandum of understanding with VMSO to proceed with the project.