Why develop The House of Sport?
Ottawa is home to many national sports governing bodies generating more than $76 million in local economic activity. According to an economic impact study authored by Norm O’Reilly, Ottawa is home to 46 National Sports Organizations (NSOs) and Multi-Sport Organizations (MSOs), including Skate Canada, Canada Soccer and Athletics Canada, the Canadian Paralympic Committee and the Coaching Association of Canada. It adds up to about 60 per cent of all national amateur sports organizations funded by Sport Canada.
“The presence of these organizations within the city gives us an advantage on attracting major events such as the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup and the 2016 Tim Hortons Brier,” shares Ottawa Tourism President & CEO Michael Crockatt, “We not only want them to maintain a presence, we want them to thrive and bring additional benefits to the community.”
Mayor Jim Watson agrees sports can play a significant role in boosting economic growth. “It’s important for Ottawa to diversify its economy beyond the federal government and high technology industry,” the Mayor said in a statement, “In order to create other types of opportunities, sectors such as sports take on an added importance. We want to not only maintain the presence of these organizations here in the nation’s capital; we want to see them thrive and bring additional benefits to our community.”
Above and beyond the economic impact, these organizations also help the city in dozens of intangible ways, whether it’s through increased volunteerism and civic pride or by promoting the city as a great place to visit when foreigners come for a sports-related event. Local residents – particularly kids – can also benefit from the groups’ mandate to increase participation in their sports through accessible local programs.
In this context, these not-for-profit organizations are worth holding on to, even if it means investing to do it.
The House of Sport, an innovative, collaborative and connected sport community would be visionary – the first of its kind in Canada. NSOs and MSOs housed under one roof could benefit from the economies of scale and efficiencies by sharing common elements such as meeting rooms, reception, conference halls, a coffee bar, washrooms, technologies and many other resources. This co-location could result in positive collisions of energy and experience, resulting in improved sport experiences and new developments of support.
Excerpts taken from: “Sports mean big business to Ottawa, study says” published in the Ottawa Business Journal, June 01, 2015 and “ Sport groups add $76 million to Ottawa economy” published in the Ottawa South News, June 03, 2015.