Investors Group Field Draws Mixed Reviews In Debut As Traffic, Parking Prove Problematic
CFL Winnipeg Blue Bombers fans yesterday "rushed through the gates" of Investors Group Field and "raved about their first taste of the city’s newest high-end sports facility," according to David Larkins of the WINNIPEG SUN. There were "wrinkles and wrenches in the plans of some fans who arrived late after fighting traffic," but the "consensus from fans about the stadium was that it gives off a close-knit vibe." Fans' opinions were "largely positive" (WINNIPEG SUN, 6/13). But the SUN's Paul Friesen writes from "horrendous access and parking issues to the performance on the field and some 5,000 empty seats," the team and the stadium "weren't exactly a smash, opening night hit." Thousands of fans "missed a good chunk of the action." Still, the stadium has "great sightlines and wide open spaces to see and be seen." Visually it is "impressive, with the rolling steel canopies and sunken bowl" (WINNIPEG SUN, 6/13). In Winnipeg, Gary Lawless writes "mistakes and problems were to be expected" in the first exhibition game of the season, and the team had "monumental parking and transportation issues." While the stadium is "beautiful," it will be the responsibility of President & CEO Garth Buchko "to solve these problems." He will "either have a province eating out of his hand or clamouring for his head" (WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, 6/13).