Commonewealth Games, Halifax, HRM

Happy happy, joy joy!

The news is just out that HRM city council and the provincial government have withdrawn support for the Commonwealth Games bid! And I had my doubts, shame shame!

Now let’s see if the city is prepared to say, take half of what they were thinking of unloading on that white elephant and do something useful with it. Oh, the things we could do!

I’m really looking forward to prepared for the whinging from the business community, but in the end, they’ll be thankful. If the Games were to be no more successful than those in Melbourne, they’ll owe the continuance of their businesses to us not getting the Games. Bruce Devenne over at StoptheHRMGames has assembled a fine selection of articles on some of the real effects of the Games.

On on!


16 thoughts on “Happy happy, joy joy!

  1. I would ascribe some credit to you and people like you who saw through the cloud of bullshit surrounding the whole sorry affair.

    The Chronicle-Herald front page online notes that the Bid Committee were thanked for exemplary work over the past year. I think my definition of exemplary differs greatly from theirs – I think I need to go work for Mayor Kelley.

    I know Scott Logan, and in my experience, he’s a lunkhead who acts and promises things without any thought for the consequences. This fiasco has not changed my opinion.
    Now, let’s have some athletic facilities at a fraction of the cost and less falderol.


  2. The province is hinting at no new spending in their upcoming budget – getting debts down is what I’ve heard.

    I’m sad. And disappointed. 😦 But not surprised in the least.


  3. Oddly enough the Saint John Telegraph Journal had an editorial two days ago in support of getting the games and slagging those “short-sighted” individuals who oppose them. I can only assume that the Irvings figured to make some cash of of that boondoggle.I’m looking forward to their take on the latest development. Like Flash I think it would be nice, but unexpected, if they came out in support of building better facilities without attaching a dog and pony show to it.


  4. Doug -> I think that we can be well assured that the Irvings were going to be out there front and centre.

    Flabber -> I had an inkling that the writing was on the wall when Rodney announced the other day that he was going after the debt this coming budget. I can’t say that it surprises me after he took so much heat during the election campaign for basically financing everything the NDP asked for. I have a feeling that Tory fortunes in this province rest not with handing out budget goodies but with fiscal responsibility, which would be hard to claim on a dice roll like the Games bid.

    That said, city council now has the chance to step up, if they want to, and offer to finance some real development. They were prepared to pony up close to half a billion on a gamble, surely if someone came to them with a good proposal for new facilities offering some of the long-term benefits (training facilities, for instance), it might get a receptive ear. Not from the province, though.

    Flash -> It certainly did not take an oracle to see that this was going to be a disaster. I just found out today that the Scottish bid has a price tag of $3.5 billion. And you know what? It was public knowledge – the knowledge of which did not seem to help their competition (us) one little bit.

    I’m glad to see the end of this.


  5. Somehow, kevvyd, I think I’d be surprised if there wasn’t more “Oh no! Spending money?!! That’s bad!” attitudes about building training facilities and the like, even if there was a good propsal. When that was mentioned in the bid (that the facilities would benefit more than just the athletes, people still questioned the benefit of that for the rest of the province, especially in rural areas.

    Ah well. Guess we’ll wait and see. I won’t have as high a level of ‘cautious optimism’ with any future actions in HRM or NS after this.


  6. Doug – maybe Irving can offer to help fund the stadium? Of course, they’d probably want naming rights, but I’m sure the citizens of Nova Scotia would suck it up to watch CFL football being played at the Irving Oil Stadium.

    Kevvyd – don’t think this’ll be the end of it, not by a long shot. Over at, they’ve already started the whining, and you know that anytime there’s bad economic news, you’ll hear the chorus of ‘this never would have happened if we’d gotten the Games – they would have been our salvation!’


  7. Flabber -> There is definitely a reluctance on the part of the province to spend money here, and for good reason – they are $12 billion in the whole. This would have been absolute fiscal insanity. However, the city is in a somewhat better position to spend and if there is a will to build better facilities in the city then it is natural that it should exist in the city.

    I would suggest that if someone had a specific project in mind for an elite training centre, then now is exactly the time to approach HRM to sponsor it.


  8. Thanks, Dan. 🙂 I never thought it would take a jaded view on life/politics to make me a true Maritimer. 😉 I was hoping that just picking up some of the local slang and eating more lobster would do it!


  9. Hey, we’ve been having our own little scandal here in Newfoundland, thank you – and there’s nothing like the realization that the NDP is just as quick to take money under the table as the Libs and Tories to ruin your faith in your fellow man…


  10. Just to let you know, the mayor of Edmonton has annouced he will be approaching Harper to snag the maney that was to be wasted/embezzeled/squandered (choose your verb) to fund his bid for the 2013 World University Games. Fortunately, for Edmonton and Alberta, we can afford to host international events of this calliber. I am sad that Halifax is not able to host financially the 2014 games, because I know the class and friendliness of the people there would make the event a huge success to the participants. I agree with the kogs, that putting on a party that is that expensive its going to leave you with one hell of a hangover and a miserable cleanup job.


  11. It helps Edmonton’s case that they have hosted the University games successfully in the past, too. I suspect that those games are not (and do not try to be) an also-ran to the Olympics, and thus have fewer esoteric (to me) events to host.

    If Halifax wants to host more international events in order to boost the facilities here, perhaps we should look more towards individual world championship events. We’ve already proven that hockey championships and rowing/kayaking events are do-able here. There’s no reason, so long as the costs are manageable and the benefits transparent, not to shoot for similar events in other sports…even those for which the facilities don’t currently exist.


  12. Bruce,
    I should thank you for the part you played in this whole sordid affair – your website brought together a lot of good information that I think influenced the final decision.

    Good work!


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