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The sale of bricks by Home Depot to be used to pave the proposed Centennial Olympic Park have not gone as well as expected, according to Home Depot top marketing exec Dick Hammill. With paving set to begin in a few months, fewer than 100,000 bricks have been sold, less than 5% of its inventory. In order for Home Depot to make its goal, it will need to sell 1.9M more bricks. Currently, the bricks are selling at a rate of 2,000-3,000 a day, with sales increasing 30% each week. Even so, Olympic organizers are going to "take a stronger hand in the marketing program." ACOG President Billy Payne: "What we didn't do initially was combine the collective and creative marketing resources of Home Depot with ACOG." ACOG officials Dick Yarbrough and Scott Anderson will begin working directly with Home Depot (Melissa Turner, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 1/6).
In Atlanta, officials are blaming the "flurry of Olympic- related building and a nationwide increase in construction costs," for the shortage of funds for two state projects tied to the Olympics. The $106.5M Olympic Village at Georgia Tech, which is currently under construction, will require another $5M for completion and bids for a proposed $27.4M pedestrian plaza and parking deck at the Georgia World Congress Center have reportedly come in $8M more than expected (Ken Foskett, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 1/6).