Interview with Mike O’Donnell, City of Regina Councillor (Ward 8)

The City of Regina Councilman Mike O’Donnell joined us this week to discuss the role of the City of Regina in the Saskatchewan provincial government’s attempt to develop a new entertainment complex (If You Build It, They Will Come…Stadiums and Arenas, originally aired October 18, 2010).

—— First, Councilman O’Donnell explained that the Provincial Government was the group that initiated discussions for a new facility.A feasibility study was then completed on behalf of the province and the City of Regina. The feasibility study was important to us because we had to see if it was economically viable. “And of course I think we were ambitious in that we’re looking at a dome stadium. The actual total cost is $431 million.”

—— Councilman O’Donnell then discussed why the Province and the City feel a new entertainment development is necessary. “The argument there seems to be is that Winnipeg, you know you are used to having a lot of entertainment people stop your way, but then they go past us to go all the way to Calgary or Vancouver because we don’t have the facility.”

—— Councilman O’Donnell touched on why public funding should be used for these types of developments by adding “…when you gather people you develop community, when you put people in positive environments, the whole community benefits.”

—— The Councilman informed Athletes Angle that he visited several other venues in Canada and the U.S.¬† Councillor O’Donnell commented that there are many things to be learned from other cities developing similar projects; however, the key is to focus on the needs and tendencies of the city. For Regina, the Councillor believes the development should have limited parking to encourage the use of transit.

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