Greater Sudbury city council was unanimous in rejecting administration’s proposal for a $215-million Kingsway Entertainment District during today’s meeting.
This was the latest in a series of go/no-go moments of city council for the long-discussed municipal arena/events centre project, but the first time since its 2017 approval when a majority of city council members took a no-go stance.
A proposal for an alternative $150-million project was also met with defeat. Its two proponents, Ward 5 Coun. Robert Kirwan and Ward 11 Coun. Bill Leduc, were alone in supporting it.
Sudbury.com will publish a more in-depth report on the events of this afternoon’s decision of city council soon.
Although the project’s private partners, including Genesis Hospitality (hotel), Gateway Casinos (casino) and developer Dario Zulich affirmed last week that they remained on board with the project, it remains to be seen where they stand following today’s decision of city council.
Up until today’s meeting, the approved budget for the KED has been $100 million, which has included $90 million in debt and $10 million in fundraising. Last week’s report by city engineering services director David Shelsted was the first indication the price had reached $215 million.
With today’s decision of city council, it will likely be up to the next incarnation of city council, elected on Oct. 24, to decide how or if to proceed with the KED, including what to do with the $90 million the city has already secured in debt for the project.
Tyler Clarke covers city hall and political affairs for Sudbury.com.