City solicits builders for sculpture at 'Frank Clare' stadium

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By David Reevely, The Ottawa Citizen

OTTAWA — The city is looking for steel fabricators who can make the pieces for a major sculpture at the renovated Lansdowne Park, though its procurement documents put the sculpture in the wrong place and misspell the name of legendary football coach Frank Clair.

The work, called The Screen, is to be installed just east of Frank Clair Stadium. The city tells potential bidders it's to go in west of "Frank Clare Stadium."

Clair coached the Ottawa Rough Riders for 14 years in the 1950s and '60s and won three Grey Cups with the team, then he became general manager and the team won two more. The city-owned stadium at Lansdowne Park was named for Clair in 1993. He died in 2005.

The artwork is meant to be a visual divider between the renovated stadium and the large park the city's planning for the southeast quadrant of Lansdowne. Consisting of about 70 vertical steel slats — some as tall as 10 metres — The Screen is also supposed to be a sort of digital display, with an array of electronic lights that can either show abstract designs (undulating water most of the time, according to the city) or more purposeful images. It's being designed by Vancouver's Jill Anholt.

For now, the city's only looking for potential bidders, hoping to end up with a shortlist of finalists who'll then compete on price and other criteria for the eventual contract to make the steel parts and install them on footings construction contractors will place.

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