LeBreton Flats DCDLS bid includes underground arena, 'Brewseum'
André Desmarais, Guy Laliberté believed to be among deep-pocketed investors behind rival bid
The group competing against the Ottawa Senators for the right to redevelop LeBreton Flats is backed by a pair of Quebec-based billionaires, and plans to build an underground, NHL-style arena, CBC News has learned.
DCDLS, led by Devcore Group, is competing against Rendez Vous LeBreton Group, led by Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk, for the right to redevelop the 9.3 hectares of land just west of downtown Ottawa — with the option of taking on an additional 12.3 hectares.
- Ottawa Senators sale a key factor in Lebreton Flats bid
- Senators won't play at arena built by competing bidder, Melnyk says
- Lebreton Flats redevelopment down to 2 proposals
Major players in the bidding process say Guy Laliberté, founder of Cirque du Soleil, also backs the DCDLS bid.
According to Forbes, Laliberté was worth $2.1 billion US in 2015, and recently sold most of his shares in Cirque du Soleil.
Devcore Group also features Montreal-based developers Broccolini and Canderel, construction firm Pomerleau, plus three architects — Richard Brisbin, Claude Provencher and Moriyama & Teshima.
Both bids include a sports and entertainment centre and a new main public library, while sources familiar with the DCDLS bid told CBC News that plan recently included the following:
- Central library/National Archives building up to 200,000 square feet.
- NHL-style arena almost entirely underground (two storeys above ground).
- Automotive museum.
- 'Brewseum' beer museum sponsored by Molson Coors Brewing Company.
- Farm Boy.
- Skydiving simulator.
- Botanical garden/man-made beach.
LeBreton Flats plans revealed Tuesday
DCDLS plans to meet with Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson on Monday, just one day before presentations to the National Capital Commission, CBC News has also learned.
RendezVousLebreton Group also reportedly includes Windmill Developments, which is building the Zibi Development on the shores of the Ottawa River.
Rules stipulate neither group can reveal details of their plans to the public or any third party before the presentation to the NCC on Tuesday.
The NCC is expected to announce the successful bid in early 2017.
Below are recent projects built by members of the DCDLS bid.
- Saputo Stadium (Montreal Impact) by Broccolini.
- Casino du Lac-Leamy in Gatineau, Que., by Pomerleau.
- Videotron Centre in Quebec City, Que., by Pomerleau.
- Export Development Canada headquarters in Ottawa by Broccolini and Canderel.
- Tour des Canadiens (sports-themed skyscraper) in Montreal by Canderel.
- Bell Canada campus in Montreal by Canderel.