Is Quebec City’s new amphitheatre a white elephant?

Is Quebec City’s new amphitheatre a white elephant?

Quebec City (Quebec) September 15, 2014 – Word is starting to circulate throughout the city that maybe that new stadium that’s costing taxpayers $400 million dollars is going to turn out to be just a symbol, rather than a useful place to host shows or sporting events, in other words, a white elephant.

Quebec Amphitheatre. Photo credit: Judicieux

Quebec Amphitheatre. Photo credit: Judicieux

It was for this reason that the CEO and President of Québecor Pierre Dion, along with the new Groupe Sport president Benoit Robert, held a press conference last week to reassure the population that things are going well and that the new structure will be used to full capacity, whether it be for a sports team or for musical spectacles. Québecor is the company that will handle the administration of the new stadium.

With the chance of getting a NHL hockey team seemingly slowly slipping away, people are starting to ask themselves what exactly is going to take place in the huge building and whether or not the whole thing was simply a political ploy to obtain votes back when the province and city were both on the campaign trail three years ago.

Despite the positive attitude of the two presidents, so far they have nothing concrete to show the citizens that the amphitheatre is going to be the success it was supposed to be.

And the statistics are not good if one looks at the past ten years on the show business scale.

In 2014 Quebec City hosted 1,836 different shows – the lowest number in the last 9 years.
1.3 million tickets were sold – 15% less than last year and the lowest number of paying customers since 2006 at 833,923.

Keep in mind Quebec City already has at least five other theatres that can be used to host shows of different varieties, including the Grande Théatre, Palais Montcalm, Théatre le Capitole, Théatre Impérial, and Pavilion de la Jeunesse among others, and that doesn’t include the outdoor venues on the Plains of Abraham and the Agora in the old port.

Oh and don’t forget, the old Colisée is still there.

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