Hamilton, ON has rejected a proposal that called for placing a dome over the playing surface of Tim Hortons Field, which is slated to begin hosting soccer.
As part of the expected launch of the Canadian Premier League, officials have been preparing for the likelihood of a team playing at Tim Hortons Field. The club would be under the same leadership as the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, the Canadian Football League franchise that uses the stadium.
One of the concepts that was pitched to make the the stadium more compatible for soccer was an air dome that would cover the playing surface at certain points of the year. Club officials proposed the concept to Hamilton officials as not only a way to conduct practices on a year-round basis, but to open the facility on a year-round basis.
The Hamilton City Council, however, rejected the proposal, citing potential conflicts with other area indoor sports facilities as one of its issues. Plans for the soccer team are still expected to move forward, though the lack of a dome presents some challanges for the organization. More from CBC:
The Hamilton Tiger-Cats are likely “within 90 days” of announcing a new level one soccer team for the Canadian Premier League, said John McGrane, a Canadian soccer hall-of-famer and 25-time national team member who’s been working with the team. It’s already licensed four names, including Hamilton United and the Hamilton Steelers.
If you were to ask me where we’re at right now,” he said, “I would say I can see the finish line not too far away.”
The lack of sports dome on Tim Hortons Field doesn’t help, McGrane said. But it’s not a deal breaker.
“It does hamper what the long-term process is as far as developing a professional team that is based on Canadian talent,” he said. “It does do that.”
The Canadian Premier Soccer League is expected to launch as early as 2018.
Image courtesy Hamilton Tiger-Cats.