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Sunday, September 20, 2009


I haven't read enough information to decide whether or not I support The Katz Group proposal for the construction of an arena in downtown Edmonton, but as I wait for more information, I am continually surprised at how much Edmonton's media has capitulated to awe of The Katz Group's concept.

Today's Edmonton Journal provides a perfect example of this. Without releasing any new information, The Katz Group secured a front page headline by tempting the media with vague "hints." The headline story was largely void of new information and it appears to have reprinted much of what has already been covered in the past month.

If that wasn't enough, the article also includes a quote from American academic Mark Rosentraub defining the buzzword "starchitecture."
"You're combining the word 'star' and 'architecture,' so we call it starchitecture," Rosentraub says.
As The Katz Group moves their downtown arena agenda forward, it is imperative that Edmontonians have a mature debate about how this will shape our downtown core. I hope that when pertinent information is actually released our mainstream media can then provide responsible, balanced, and critical analysis.


Party of One said...

I really don't care all that much about the arena, but I do care about a vibrant downtown. If they build an ediface that doesn't promote a lively and dynamic street-level atmosphere, it will just be a big block of nothingness except on game days.

I want to see a publically accessable fitness centre, similar, if not better, than the one in Commonwealth Stadium. I want to see GOOD restaurants that serve more than beer and popcorn to game patrons, not a "food-court" of chain fast-food suppliers. I want to see shops accessable from the street. And I want to see a decent live music venue, WITH a dance floor and tiered seating. If those things are put in place, the potential of this project will be realized. If not, we'll just suck the remaining life out of downtown.

AND, let's keep the available parking to a minimum. There's going to be a close LRT station at the EPCOR centre; FORCE people to use it by limiting parking to those working in the building. There's little uglier than a stadium surrounded by a sea of parking lots, nor more of a waste of valuable downtown land.

Feynman and Coulter's Love Child said...

If only there was some sort of way to enhance how a downtown looks while also providing parking...

Anonymous said...

How about Katz and crew f*ck off with their requests for 400 million in tax dollars?

Now there's a plan I could get behind.

Anonymous said...


Berry Farmer said...

How old is the Coliseum?

I keep getting lost in that question. I know... I know; not enough sky-boxes, out-dated dressing rooms, too far out of the center of the city, blah, blah, blah....

I once attended a concert in Caesarea, Israel in a amphitheatre built by the Romans.

And, what are we going to do with the Coliseum after the Katzseum is erected?

I guess we could use if for storage.

Josh K said...

As on who works for an architect, I think it's incumbent on me to point out that guy quoted in the article didn't even use "starchitecture" in the correct way. The term generally refers to buildings designed by "starchitects," the upper crust of international architects that have recently gained a sort of celebrity status (ie Frank Gehry, Rem Koolhaas, Zaha Hadid, etc) -- not to a building that possesses "star"-like qualities.

Anonymous said...

Rexall Place is ranked in the top 10 venues in the world. Why does it need to be replaced?

Anonymous said...

All I care about is more leg room! Seriously, I am 5 feet tall and I cannot cross my legs while sitting at Rexall Place. I can't imagine how uncomfortable it must be for tall people!