SBD/14/Facilities Venues

CINCINNATI BUSINESSES SUPPORT STADIUM PLANS

     Cincinnati business and community leaders are voicing strong
support and financial interest for redesigning Riverfront Stadium
and building a new facility for either the Bengals or Reds,
according to this morning's CINCINNATI ENQUIRER.  PNC Bank
President and CEO Ralph Michael said "we are willing to buy
luxury boxes, even if it is required at both places," and
Cincinnati-based Proctor & Gamble's Chair Ed Artzt stated his own
company support for stadium plans.  Small business leaders also
voiced interest in skyboxes and club seating.  Such financial
commitments should offset the estimated $200M for construction.
City officials said local companies should participate as
"corporate good citizens" and to attract prospective employees
with pro sports teams.  The regional task force formed earlier
this year to assess the project also hopes to solicit financing
through local and state tax dollars, as Cleveland did for its
$425M Gateway project.  City officials might also approach
officials across the river in MY about contributing to the
project (Richard Green, CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, 9/14).
     HIDDEN COSTS: In a related column, Tom Lang writes "there is
no repair fairy godmother" and an endowment or "infrastructure"
fund would offset future maintenance costs and "might even force
prudent design and material changes in the original construction"
(CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, 9/14).
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