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Winnipeg stadium owner sues architect and general contractor

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by Russell Hixson

The owner of Investors Group Stadium in Winnipeg is suing the architect and general contractor over millions of dollars in construction issues.
Winnipeg stadium owner sues architect and general contractor

The 33,500-seat field, completed in 2013, is home for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the University of Manitoba athletic program.

According to the lawsuit, filed March 4 by owner Triple B, a long list of  defects, and construction and building code deficiencies were discovered during and after construction.

Mould issues, lack of fireproofing, extensive concourse slab cracking, drainage issues, insulation issues, weight limit issues, mechanical issues and layout issues were just a few mentioned in court documents.

Triple B claims it has spent more than $4.72 million repairing the problems and the total is rising.

The suit is asking the courts to order Raymond S.C. Wan Architect Inc. and Stuart Olson Construction Ltd. to pay for the repairs, inspections and reports due to the issues.

Last summer, an architectural firm was paid to examine the issues and generated a report that concluded that "during the design and construction of the stadium, there was insufficient attention to the management of water drainage and heating, poor execution of critical details and poor construction quality control."

According to a release by Triple B, repairs underway during the winter include insulating the concessions stands that have fixtures and water pipes that cannot be allowed to freeze, but were built without sufficient insulation.

"The private suites have consistently leaked in a heavy rain and during spring thaw runoff," it stated.

"The suites were constructed with single pane windows and have minimal insulation making it difficult to keep the room temperature warm enough to protect the piping.

"In the stands, a lack of drains and concrete that slopes in the wrong direction allows rain to pond underfoot and pool in the concourse."

Triple B added that it wants to hold the parties accountable on behalf of Manitoba taxpayers, sport fans and concert goers.

"Triple B believes that the community deserves to have the facility that it paid for and believes that the defendants are responsible to cover those repairs," the company stated.

Blue Bombers president and CEO Wade Miller expressed his support for the lawsuit and noted in a letter to fans that it won't impact events.

"While we are extremely disappointed that this great new CFL facility has faced these ongoing issues, we also realize that this legal action is an important step forward in attempting to have them resolved," the letter reads.

"As we look to the 2015 season, please be assured that this legal action or potential remediation will in no way impact any of the upcoming events which will all proceed as scheduled."

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