Canadian Football League

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Ottawa back in Canadian Football League?

Ottawa's mayor says he has been in close talks with a group of investors interested in bringing a professional football team back to the city.
CBC News
"It's a group of very high-quality, very, as they say, deep-pocketed Ottawa businesspeople who have a reputation for being very astute," Larry O'Brien told reporters Monday afternoon. "I've talked to them. I've talked to the CFL."
He added that the group members interested in a Canadian Football League franchise have asked that their names not be released yet, but he thinks they will release their identities within the next week or two.
O'Brien made the announcement at a new conference about the detailed engineering report that recommended demolishing or fixing the lower south side stands of Frank Clair Stadium in Lansdowne Park, which were deemed at risk of collapsing due to structural deterioration.
The stadium was the former home of the Ottawa Renegades. The CFL team played there for four years until 2006, when the owners shut it down while searching for a new owner. However, talks between prospective owners, the CFL and the City of Ottawa have never yet yielded an agreement.
O'Brien said he favours knocking down the lower portion of the south side stands of the stadium, given the findings of the engineering report.
"I think that's very clearly something that would be the safest thing to do, it's something that's got to be done. Let's get it over with," he said. "And then I think we should open up the field to see who wants to be involved in redeveloping Lansdowne Park."
That includes the new prospective CFL team owners, who are interested in redeveloping the park "in a way that would maximize the return to the citizens of Ottawa," O'Brien said.


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