Suits Filed Over Unfinished Arena

Two construction companies have filed lawsuits against the developer of the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre and the city of Victoria, B.C., and 10 more builders say they are owed money for work on the unfinished arena.

The $30 million publicly financed venue has been under construction for more than two years. It was scheduled to open last fall but was delayed until March 26th, when it debuted with a Rod Stewart concert. However, a number of “deficiencies” still remain and the increasing legal battles have only added to construction delays.

Victoria Mayor Alan Lowe said the arena is 95 percent done, but the city and developer RG Victoria (Construction) Ltd. have failed to agree on terms for the remaining work.

Because it has not been paid by the city, RG says it has stopped payments to its contractors, resulting in a dozen unhappy companies who say they are owed more than $2.6 million for their efforts. Two of those – M3 Steel and D. Chalifour Construction – are suing the city and RG for nearly $2 million.

A number of liens have been placed against the venue, and RG itself has filed a lien against the city. Lowe said the liens are “only claims and many of those are in dispute.”

Although the venue is not completely finished, it is open for business and has concerts booked for Avril Lavigne, Nickelback, Def Leppard and more.