The City of Greater Sudbury continues its advances for the development of the widely discussed Kingsway Entertainment District event centre plans in the outskirts of the city. Despite the legal opposition, the city has recently announced that it is now looking for an operator of the KED project and issued a request for pre-qualification for candidates.
The KED project will be an entertainment centre, with a hockey arena, casino, and hotel. The property is expected to have a 5,8000-seat events centre, which will be the home to the Sudbury Wolves OHL team and the Sudbury Five basketball team. The new arena is expected to launch in 2024, and it will cost approximately 100 million Canadian dollars.
This week, the city released a request for pre-qualification in order to receive submissions from corporations that want to join the initiative and operate the planned KED events centre. According to the statement from the municipality, the ideal candidate would be an experienced company that can provide a contribution to the project’s design.
Also, the selected company will be tasked with maximizing revenue, while minimizing operating costs. As well as, improve venue programing, and work in a way to meet the city’s outlined goal in the community energy and emissions plan. Additionally, the firm will also be managing operations of the property, as well as marketing, and programming.
The Request for Pre-Qualification will be the first step of the two-part process of finding the most suitable applicant. Then, with the second part, the city will require shortlisted companies to submit their own terms in a proposal. The city will then select a company to become the venue’s operator. The process should be completed by early 2022, however, it is not a final deadline.
While in search of a project manager, the city is also finalizing and issuing a design-build request for proposals. According to the municipality, the new arena would be an enhanced community area that will offer a unique experience for residents, and it will also be able to attract tourists from outside of the city and the whole world. Construction will begin once the final design is selected, and the grand opening should be at the end of 2024.
In a September meeting, Greater Sudbury’s city council voted on a motion to start groundwork preparation at the KED site. The council voted 7 to 6 in favor of the proposal and now work at the outskirts location can begin. The process will be conducted by Bot Engineering & Construction Ltd., which should begin preparations before the end of this November.
Recently, a website called Sudbury Questions emerged with reports that the city has been hiding CA$14 million in costs for the Kingsway Entertainment District project. Wendy Watson, a spokesperson for Greater Sudbury Utilities, categorically denied the claims and described them as allegations of corruption. Ward 1 Coun. Mark Signoretti, who is a famous opposer of the project, has also supported Ms. Watson’s claim the allegations do not stand any ground.
Source: Keown, Mary “City looking for someone to operate Sudbury’s new events centre”, Sudbury Star, November 2, 2021