The Pan Am Stadium is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. We chose to build it at the West Harbour. Now it's time to stand behind our choice. Show your support.

Pan Am Games Stadium: Hamilton's To Choose Or Lose

A Pan Am Games Stadium at the West Harbour is still Hamilton's to choose - or Hamilton's to lose. We need your help to make it a reality.

You've heard about the Hamilton Tiger-Cats' latest play: they want to move the stadium to Burlington, and it won't cost Burlington a dime.

The Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games Corporation has said that there is no need for Hamilton to build a massive stadium to participate in the Games. A 6,000 seat community stadium will do nicely.

Ian Troop, CEO of Toronto 2015, said this: "If Hamilton wanted to go with a 5,500-6,500 seat stadium, we would have gone with that." The idea of building the Hamilton Tiger-Cats a stadium was actually the City's idea.

After the Ticats' last-minute rejection of the City's chosen West Harbour site, the City has studied (at great expense) a slew of other sites to try to make them happy. Every one has been too expensive, and every one has failed to gain community support.

The only site that definitely works is the West Harbour.

The Ticats say they won't play there. That's fine, because from Toronto 2015's perspective, we don't actually need them to create a lasting legacy for the city.

All we have to do is say "yes" to building a scalable 6,000 seat community stadium at the West Harbour. Seriously - all Council needs to do is give the go-ahead, and the West Harbour stadium location is a go. That's because:

  • Toronto 2015 says a small community stadium is viable and meets their requirements.
  • A smaller stadium will be tens of millions cheaper, and we have all the funding we need from upper levels of government and the Future Fund.
  • The stadium can be scalable: any small stadium built for the Games will support temporary seating to bring it to 15,000 seats, so the foundation for a larger stadium will be in place. If the Ticats come to their senses, they can join the project.
  • More than 200 non-Ticat-related events occur each year in Ivor Wynne that can happen in a smaller stadium instead, making citizens the legacy tenants of the stadium.
  • The Pan Am Games are slated to occur in Hamilton as well as the other participating municipalities.
  • We own the land where the stadium will go.
  • We've already done the studies: we know the West Harbour works and we can prove it to Hostco.

City Council meets on January 12 to discuss putting Confederation Park back on the table, or potentially to withdraw from the stadium bid altogether.

Please, contact Mayor Bob Bratina, councillors, and the media and tell them we want City Council to say "yes" to a scalable 6,000 seat stadium and "yes" to bringing the Games to the Hammer - where they belong!

Click here to email Mayor Bratina, all city councillors, and the City Manager.

If you have a problem with that link, or you want to email the mayor or councillors individually, click here for their email addresses.

The email address for letters to the editor at the Hamilton Spectator is letters@thespec.com.

You may also want to contact Chris Murray, City Manager - any staff recommendation will come from his office. CityManager@hamilton.ca.

The Pan Am Stadium: Hamilton's to choose or lose.



The Motion

On August 10, 2010, Hamilton City Council will vote on the location of the Pan Am Games Stadium. The choice is between two sites – The West Harbour and the East Mountain. The choice is about the type of city we want to live in and what we believe the future of Hamilton is all about.

As citizens, it’s Our City, Our Future and Our Money on the line and we have the final say on where the stadium should be located.

The following motion will be presented at City Council on August 10 and we urge all who support a dynamic, progressive vision for Hamilton to voice their support for the motion to all decision makers involved. There are a number of ways you can show your support outlined below:

Our City, Our Future: A Motion on the Location of the Hamilton Pan Am Games Stadium


Dear City Council:

Whereas, a new Hamilton stadium for the Pan Am Games represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to accelerate waterfront/downtown revitalization;

Whereas, Hamilton City Council has voted in favour of a West Harbour location, backed up by thorough analysis and a business case presented by Deloitte Canada and a traffic analysis presented by IBI;

Whereas, Hamilton taxpayers have already spent millions of dollars acquiring land on the West Harbour for the project;

Whereas, the City of Hamilton is contributing $60 million of our Future Fund towards the project, while the Hamilton Tiger-Cats are a minority partner;

Whereas, if the East Mountain site is chosen, Hamilton would be one of the only cities in North America to build a suburban stadium in this day and age, and it would send a very poor, regressive message about Hamilton around North America, impacting our ability to retain the best and brightest talent who seek progressive dynamic cities in which to live;

Whereas, not choosing the West Harbour site will impact the timing and viability of Hamilton’s case for priority funding for its Rapid Transit plans as it calls into question the City’s commitment to revitalization of the Downtown Urban Growth Node under the Province of Ontario Places to Grow Strategy and Metrolinx plans;

Therefore Be It Resolved:


(a) That Hamilton City Council reaffirms the West Harbour location as its choice for the Pan Am Games Stadium to be funded by money through the Future Fund;

(b) That an invitation be extended to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats to be a community partner on new terms that allow for the financial success of the football club at the West Harbour location.