SBD/30/Facilities Venues

WINNIPEG WAITS, DEBATES ON NEW ARENA SITE DECISION

     Manitoba Entertainment Complex (MEC), the business group
trying to build a new arena in Winnipeg for the Jets, must
convince the Winnipeg City Council to approve a proposal in
principle to donate the land for such a facility before a vote
tomorrow.  According to Friday's WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, the MEC has
only four of the nine yes votes needed, six council members
oppose the idea, and six were undecided. The MEC has promised
$110M in private funding (Stevens Wild, WINNIPEG FREE-PRESS,
1/27).  Winnipeg Deputy Mayor George Fraser says opposition to a
new arena could leave renovation of Winnipeg Arena as the city's
only option (Nick Martin, WINNIPEG FREE-PRESS, 1/27).  MEC board
member Bob Silver says major league sports is "interwoven into
the fabric" of Winnipeg: "What we are talking about is not the
future of sport but future of our city" (Glen Dawkins, WINNIPEG
SUN, 1/27).  Sink, Combs and Delthlefs, the same firm that
designed the San Jose Arena, is in charge of designs for the
prospective arena in Winnipeg (SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS, 1/29).
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