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Costs for the repair of the L.A. Coliseum have risen to a projected $92.7M, 50% higher than estimates in September, and two-and-a-half times more than the original estimate. For the first time, FEMA is saying that federal and state earthquake relief funds will not pay for the entire project. Items such as expanded concession areas, steel-reinforced beams providing seismic strength for the current structure and eventual luxury boxes on the stadium's rim are cited as "ineligible for reimbursement." Coliseum Commission President Yvonne Brathwaite Burke said if there are improvements beyond basic repair, "there won't be a government payment, but that's something that has to be negotiated, we don't always believe there has been a betterment." The $92.7M figure is at the point where FEMA would have recommended demolition and construction of a new facility. Harry Ornest, Vice Chairm of Hollywood Park, said a new stadium could be constructed there for $150M. All parties stressed that the decision for repair was made when estimates were lower (Kenneth Reich, L.A. TIMES, 12/16).
MA Gov. William Weld said that he wants to help the Patriots, but he is not "enthusiastic about a proposal under which the state would buy Foxboro Stadium, fix it up and lease it back to the team." Weld: "I'm not real wild about that. It's pretty expensive. But, I am for my part, willing to help the Patriots out." Patriots Owners Robert Kraft floated his new proposal on Wednesday, and continued to call on state help to enable him to field a competitive team year after year (Kindleberger & Wong, BOSTON GLOBE, 12/16).
A meeting has been set for Monday at which key players in the public buyout of the Target Center hope to complete the deal. The Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission (MSFC), Timberwolves Owner Glen Taylor, and Ogden Corp, who manages the facility, had hoped to finalize the deal by the end of the year in order to stabilize the financing. However, both MSFC Executive Director Bill Lester and Minneapolis finance officer John Moir said a deal will be impossible to achieve before 1995. Rising interest rates have adversely affected the transaction because Taylor and the MSFC have used short-term variable-rate interest debt to finance the agreement. Ogden, who dropped out of the deal once before, sent company officials to New York Thursday to meet with NBA officials and appraise them of the progress. Ogden is "concerned" about the risks of short-term, variable-rate financing, with rising interest rates fueling this concern. If the Target Center buyout is not completed by January, it will move into its third year (Jay Weiner, Minneapolis STAR-TRIBUNE, 12/15).
Today we continue to profile the NFL's infrastructure with a look at the Metrodome in Minnesota.
STADIUM: Hubert Humphrey Metrodome, Minneapolis, MN AGE: Completed 1982. OWNERSHIP: Owned and operated by Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission a governmental body. COST: $84M debt of $40M to be paid off by 2012. LUXURY SEATS: 115 suites operated by the Vikings. Pay MSFC $1M a year for the rights. CAPACITY: 64,000 9th lowest in NFL. PARKING: No parking with the facility. All city or private lots Vikings get no revenue. GAME-DAY: All game-day personnel paid for by Vikings. MAINTENANCE: Maintenance on the facility paid for by MSFC. CONCESSIONS: Volume Services. Vikings receive 10% of revenue. City receives 55%, and MLB Twins get 35%. ADVERTISING: Sports Facilities Commission handles all advertising. Vikings get no revenue. LEASE: The Vikings' lease expires in 2012. RENT: $2.84M 3rd highest in NFL
(Source: Dennis Alfton, MSFC; rent figure from the Florida Times- Union article on July 24, 1994.)
Negotiations between the City of Dallas and Mavericks Owner Don Carter over the construction of a new downtown arena adjacent to Reunion Arena hinge on the demolition of Reunion. Carter and team officials believe having side-by-side arenas "makes no economic sense." City Council members and Dallas Mayor Steve Bartlett are wary of destroying a 14-year-old facility for which they still owe around $62M. Bartlett: "I think the feeling on the council is strong that we need to look for a reuse, and we don't want a reuse that is incompatible with a new arena." Carter is willing to cover $65M of the $142M cost for the new arena in exchange for naming rights and control over major decisions involving the facility (Sylvia Martinez, DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 12/14).