REAL calls for further public consultation on future plans for the Brandt Center
The Regina Exhibition Association Limited (REAL) announced on Tuesday the launch of phase two of a public consultation on the future of the Brandt Centre, after receiving more than 5,300 surveys throughout phase one.
Of all respondents, 84 percent were from Regina.
Tim Reid, president and CEO of REAL, said the first phase was considered a success.
“Seventy-five percent of all of these respondents suggested that the Brandt Center is a very important civic asset in our community,” Reid said. “Among these respondents, the most popular events were sporting events and concerts.”
With the building nearing the end of its lifespan, the City of Regina and REAL have held ongoing discussions about the possibility of a new arena.
“Ultimately, there are a handful of sites that we are looking at for potential new arena development,” Reid said. “One of them is on this site [REAL Campus]there are three downtown locations and one site location that has potential.
Reid added that the new arena is likely to seat around 10,000, which opens the door to new entertainment ventures including a larger concert hall, the Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL) and the National Lacrosse League. (NLL).
“There were discussions with both of them,” Reid said. “I would probably say the ones with the most potential right now are CEBL, but they were very preliminary.”
There is no immediate need to renovate the Brandt Center, but it is nearing the end of its life.
“We currently have a building that hosts great hockey games every week and puts on great concerts every week,” said Reid. “The reality is that he is coming to the end of his life and we have to figure out what comes next.”
Reid added that the Brandt Center is still operating as it should.
“The good thing about where we are today is that we’re in no rush to make this decision,” Reid said. “We can work with the community and our stakeholders to come up with the right plan for our city.”
The inquiry for phase two of the public consultation is now open and Reid said he hopes they will have the results of phase two in April before appearing before city council in June.