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  #61  
Old Posted Oct 30, 2019, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Goldie View Post
The Bombers screwed Manitoba out of $200+ million for a sub-par facility built for a 3rd-rate minor-league football club that hasn't done much of anything right (on or OFF the field) since basically the 1980's in the south end of Winnipeg that's used maybe 15-20 times a year and few of us will ever set foot in. And few people raise a fuss about it. (even though everyone should be)

The Goldeyes are one of the most successful independent baseball clubs in North America that play out of a fantastic ballpark (that still holds up quite well 20 years later) in a great location and great prices (tix start at $11.00/game). None of you knew what Katz was paying before (or if you did, you didn't care), but now that this new development w/ the lease renewal is in the papers, some of you people are screaming "He should pay more!! Arrrgh! Grr! Katz is a crook! I hate him!"

*facepalm*

I hate Winnipegger's sometimes. Soooo ignorant....
The feeling is mutual towards you as well
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  #62  
Old Posted Oct 30, 2019, 12:43 PM
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^ He gets so worked up about this stuff that I'm starting to think Goldie is literally the actual Goldeyes mascot

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Originally Posted by Bdog View Post
I wonder if the view of this deal, and the general attitude toward the ball park, would be different if say Chipman, or some other figure, owned the team and was asking for the break. Again, regardless of what you think of Katz personally, he took a huge risk on downtown over 20 years ago when no one else was willing to (a 12 million dollar risk, I might add). The ball park is the reason 1000s of people come downtown for 60 nights a year, and is one of the great summer family activities.

And let's not get carried away here. Prime spot for redevelopment? The site of the ballpark is literally surrounded by surface parking lots. Let's wait until a few of those reach their supposed higher and best use before we start promoting the re-use of this community gem. Kind of reminds me of the Skinner's debate: Take a risk and support the downtown for decades, only to get kicked out the second things turn around and something cooler comes up!
I think that the Katz factor is hard to ignore when you're dealing with the Goldeyes. At one point he had a bit of a Midas touch with things, but after his mayoralty I think public regard for Katz has dropped somewhat, to put it mildly. I'm sure there's less inclination at City Hall to bend over backwards for him and his business. But that said, I don't think anyone is cheerleading for the Goldeyes' demise, just that there should be a fair deal in place. The current lease arrangement of $1 a year plus you keep all the parking revenue from city-owned surface lots seems unduly generous.

As for the site itself, you'll note in my earlier post I wasn't saying the City should start pursuing redevelopment of the ballpark site right away. It's still only 20 years old and probably has at least that many years left. I was getting at the idea that the site is pretty marketable and at the current rate of development, in 20 years time it will probably be one of the few somewhat large parcels of land left along that stretch of riverfront. Given the prime location near The Forks, Portage and Main and Waterfront Drive, I could see it being in pretty strong demand for either residential development, commercial development (offices, etc.), or even some kind of cultural or entertainment facility... someone mentioned a new Jets arena down the road, that is not outside the realm of possibility.
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  #63  
Old Posted Oct 30, 2019, 4:56 PM
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Originally Posted by NewIreland View Post
I recently moved to the Exchange, mostly because of its overall rebirth, but also because of Shaw Park. It's easily the best baseball stadium in the entire country; easily! It's in fantastic shape! Losing it would be devastating! There's nothing better than watching a game on a hot summer afternoon! The only thing I would do is build a new outfield wall with room for patio seating. The views of downtown would be outstanding! Frankly, I find these comments incredibly discouraging! It truly is a gem! I thought most Winnipegers felt this way. Apparently not...
I completely agree. It's my favourite place in the summer especially since they got the craft beer corner (almost offsets the lack of playoff success after the back to back titles)
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  #64  
Old Posted Oct 30, 2019, 5:14 PM
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I completely agree. It's my favourite place in the summer especially since they got the craft beer corner (almost offsets the lack of playoff success after the back to back titles)
Add me to the list of people who love going to Shaw Park in the summer as well. Goldeye's games are always an enjoyable experience, whether the team wins or loses (which is something I personally can't say for the city's other sports franchises). I would miss my 2-3 games a year if it was taken away.
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  #65  
Old Posted Oct 30, 2019, 5:19 PM
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Goldeyes attendance stayed strong and peaked in the early to mid 2000's, it's been in free fall since losing close to 100K fans per season from the glory years!

The novelty and allure of baseball in general is really waning for what is a pretty dull game to watch (endure)
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  #66  
Old Posted Oct 30, 2019, 5:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewIreland View Post
Shaw Park. It's easily the best baseball stadium in the entire country; easily!
I agree. Shaw Park itself is a pretty top notch facility. That said the funding agreement is something I have long questioned, especially the $1 leases for the parking lots. Something Katz did not excuse himself from while mayor of the city. Yet another conflict of interest on this part.

Something else people seem to forget is the roads in the area were significantly rerouted to accommodate the park and its parking.

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Originally Posted by Bdog View Post
I wonder if the view of this deal, and the general attitude toward the ball park, would be different if say Chipman, or some other figure, owned the team and was asking for the break.
I have been equally critical of all three pro sports facilities since before they were built. Not a fan of Chipman and the sweet heart deal he has for the arena and the SHED which he is heavily exploiting to control and personally benefit from a significant part of downtown. Never been a fan of the $1 parking lot leases that Katz got for Shaw Park. Also not a fan of how David Asper really put tax payers over a barrel with IG Field.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bdog View Post
The site of the ballpark is literally surrounded by surface parking lots. Let's wait until a few of those reach their supposed higher and best use before we start promoting the re-use of this community gem. Kind of reminds me of the Skinner's debate: Take a risk and support the downtown for decades, only to get kicked out the second things turn around and something cooler comes up!
Simply put the deal for Shaw Park has been bad for tax payers from the start and it is not something I am just getting on board with lately. As for those surface lots you suggest get developed -- they can't be as at least two of them are tied into the lease for the ball park you praise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goldie View Post
The Bombers screwed Manitoba out of $200+ million for a sub-par facility built for a 3rd-rate minor-league football club
Let's get a couple facts straight.

1. The Bombers had next to nothing to do with the plan to move to IG Field. That was a brainchild of David Asper.

2. The Bombers do not own IG Field.

3. It was David Asper walking away from his agreement to pay for IG Field after construction was well underway that forced the government to step in and guarantee the loan to fund the project.

4. BBB Inc, the true owners of IG Field were making their loan repayments as required.


5. The CFL is the highest level of pro football after the NFL. There is nothing "3rd rate" about it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Goldie View Post
that's used maybe 15-20 times a year and few of us will ever set foot in.
The facility is used about 30 times a year just for pro sports events (Bombers and Valour). Attendance at Shaw Park and IG Field are similar over the course of the year and that is with fewer events at IG Field.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goldie View Post
None of you knew what Katz was paying before (or if you did, you didn't care), but now that this new development w/ the lease renewal is in the papers, some of you people are screaming "He should pay more!! Arrrgh! Grr! Katz is a crook! I hate him!"
I have never been happy with what Katz pays for Shaw Park. I am still pissed off about just the roadwork costs alone that went into making that site happen, never mind the $1/year parking lot leases and the likely conflict of interest when he was mayor and also running a facility on land leased from the city. I have even expressed concerns on this forum how the change from Katz/Shindleman to Bowman/Chipman is basically the same game but with different players. I am also not a fan of the whole SHED funding model and how Chipman is benefiting from it.

End of the day, Katz isn't the biggest problem this city has especially now that he seems to rarely be here.
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  #67  
Old Posted Jun 14, 2020, 4:23 PM
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So the Goldeyes are playing as a road team only this season, based out of Fargo. I'm amazed that Katz is agreeing to this seeing that several AA teams are simply sitting out the season and waiting for next year. I wonder what the rationale is? The hope that maybe they can get the OK to play at home somewhere along the line? Or is the cost of shutting down and starting up again next year greater than just playing as a road team? Either way, it's interesting.

That said, the team will still be accessible via streaming. I understand that AA games are available online via PPV, but I would imagine that only a small hardcore of Goldeyes fans will be taking advantage of that option.

All in all it's unfortunate news for downtown Winnipeg. Goldeyes games tend to liven up the area around Shaw Park on summer nights and weekend days when it's usually really quiet around that part of the Exchange District.
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  #68  
Old Posted Jun 14, 2020, 6:04 PM
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Originally Posted by esquire View Post
I stumbled upon this in the Ottawa subforum... apparently Katz is trying to land a baseball team in Ottawa in partnership with the Ottawa Redblacks ownership group.

They have a nice big ballpark in Ottawa which could potentially make a team there a tidy little earner if the lease is favourable enough.
Ottawa has had a plenty of ups and downs when it comes to Baseball. Our stadium was built in 1993 to host the Ottawa Lynx, a Triple-A baseball club associated with the Montreal Expos. The team were highly successful on and off the field and attracted plenty of patrons. Then things started to go wrong. To make a few bucks, the City sold a huge swath of parking (the site has little to no transit service, so driving is the only way to get there) for big box stores development, not quite patron generating business, before the deal with the Expos ended, just a few years before they became the Washington Nationals.

After the Lynx folded in 2007, Ottawa had a string of other independent league teams, none of them lasted very long, until the Champions played their inaugural season in 2015.

That spring, the City completed a new pedestrian bridge to link the stadium with the Transitway, except that, the Transitway closed a few weeks after the start of the season later for rail conversion. The Champions' attendance was low, but they held on, with the promise of light-rail for the 2018 season. Of course, the line did not open in 2018, nor did it open during the 2019 season. By that time, the owner Miles Wolff, who was also the league's commissioner, was owed over $400,000 in rent to the City and was looking for a buyer. Any new owner, the City said, would need to clear the debt. Two groups came forward, one consisting of three young and enthusiastic entrepreneurs and the other, a partnership between Katz and OSEG. The City, already having a close relationship with OSEG, forced Wolff to deal with OSEG. It's unclear what happened next, but the impression is that Wolff had to fold the team and the City started dealing with OSEG and Katz to bring an expansion Frontier League team.

Anyway, before this whole ordeal, I had never heard of Sam Katz (wondered if he's related to Daryl Katz, from the Oilers). Based on how this thing all went down, I questioned the guy's honesty, legitimacy and good will. This thread has given me a bit of insight. Comparisons to the orange man down south (and by extension Melnyk, who has similar "qualities") is worrying.
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  #69  
Old Posted Jun 15, 2020, 3:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esquire View Post
All in all it's unfortunate news for downtown Winnipeg. Goldeyes games tend to liven up the area around Shaw Park on summer nights and weekend days when it's usually really quiet around that part of the Exchange District.
Although I won't at all miss Waterfront and the paths through the park being completely shut down all evening once a week.
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  #70  
Old Posted Jun 15, 2020, 4:35 AM
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Goldeyes are going to be playing their season out of Fargo. Considering all the other possibilities, this is probably the best option. Was sounding like a possibility they didn’t play at all this year, which could have bankrupted them.
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  #71  
Old Posted Jun 15, 2020, 8:26 AM
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Prior to Shaw Park (nee Canwest Global Park) Winnipeg had other baseball stadiums:
  • Happyland Park 1906-1922, part of an amusement park located at the south side of Portage and Sherburn. The first game by the Winnipeg Maroons on May 24,1906 had a capacity of 4000 spectators. After Happyland closed in 1922...
  • Happyland became Sherburn Park between June 1924 and 1942 where the Winnipeg Maroons played. Sherburn had a seating capacity of 3500.
  • After Sherburn Park closed, Osborne Stadium operated from May 1932 until 1952 where the Winnipeg Blue Bombers played until the Winnipeg Stadium was built at Polo Park in '53, though Osborne was not modified for baseball until 1935.
Research based on work done on their respective articles on Wikipedia.

Last edited by LilZebra; Jun 15, 2020 at 8:37 AM.
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  #72  
Old Posted Jun 15, 2020, 11:51 AM
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^ Good rundown. Then in 1953 Winnipeg Stadium became the city's main baseball facility. The configuration, with baseball stands at the SW corner of the site and with partially overlapping football and baseball fields, was so weird and unconventional that I don't know how the idea ever saw the light of day.
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  #73  
Old Posted Jul 16, 2020, 12:35 PM
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Katz and the City are still haggling over a lease arrangement for Shaw Park. Apparently the use of the parking lot at Westbrook and Pioneer is a sticking point, along with the details of how the entertainment tax will be levied.

https://globalnews.ca/news/7176546/w...ists-on-lease/

I hope the City sticks to its guns and doesn't let Katz keep control of the parking lot indefinitely. That's a very attractive redevelopment site, and there are plenty of other parking lots near Shaw Park... I doubt that much really hinges on the 100 or so spots in that lot.
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  #74  
Old Posted Jul 16, 2020, 1:41 PM
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Originally Posted by esquire View Post
I hope the City sticks to its guns and doesn't let Katz keep control of the parking lot indefinitely. That's a very attractive redevelopment site, and there are plenty of other parking lots near Shaw Park... I doubt that much really hinges on the 100 or so spots in that lot.
Just a guess but it isn't a matter of parking availability for Shaw Park events but rather who gets the revenue from that parking.
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  #75  
Old Posted Jul 16, 2020, 1:56 PM
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Originally Posted by CoryB View Post
Just a guess but it isn't a matter of parking availability for Shaw Park events but rather who gets the revenue from that parking.
Oh for sure. The Goldeyes rent out the parking spots to nearby office workers. But even if they lost that lot in a couple of years, they would still have plenty of parking that they themselves control, so losing a few of those spaces should not make or break the team as Katz is suggesting.

The sports landscape has changed dramatically compared to how it was when Shaw Park was built in 1999. We now have three hockey teams, a football team, a soccer team... there is much more competition. A team like the Goldeyes is not exactly indispensable. If Katz can't make it work then move the team back to Rochester or wherever.
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