SBD/21/Facilities Venues

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         The planned October 1 start date for construction of the
    Raptors' Air Canada Centre "will be delayed if politicians
    continue to insist on major changes," project manager Jay Cross
    said after a city committee turned down the team's latest
    proposal yesterday.  If the committee's rejection is upheld by
    the Toronto City Council next week, construction will not start
    on time.  Committee members rejected the plan because of the
    possibility of construction of high-rise residential developments
    planned by the Raptors and Canada Post near the arena.  Cross:
    "The more the delay drags on, the less enchanted our fans will be
    playing in the SkyDome and the more we'll have to start
    considering our other alternatives."  Cross said that could mean
    another site.  The NBA "would not be thrilled" by such a move,
    according to Cross:  "They've granted a franchise which was
    conditional on a new stadium.  If you don't deliver a new
    stadium, you're at risk" (Paul Moloney, TORONTO STAR, 4/21).

    Print | Tags: Facilities, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, NBA, Toronto Raptors

         The Packers, who will play all games at Green Bay's Lambeau
    Field next year, have had a 96% renewal rate from ticket-holders
    for those games formerly played at Milwaukee County Stadium.  The
    team expected only a 75% rate from those Milwaukee fans, many of
    whom face a long drive to Green Bay.  The team is currently
    adding 90 more luxury boxes and a new, 46-seat auxiliary press
    box as part of a $8M Lambeau renovation.  The waiting list for
    Packer season tickets is now 19,000 (Mike O'Hara, DETROIT NEWS,
         LIONS WANT MORE TO ROAR:  The Lions plan to reduce prices on
    about 5,000 tickets in the upper level of the Silverdome from $30
    to around $20.  The team will also keep end zone bleacher seats
    priced at $12.50.  Lions Vice Chair Bill Ford Jr. said the team,
    locked into their lease until 2004, is limited in what they can
    do "regarding ticket prices and 'fan-friendly' improvements."
    Ford: "We're going to take a look at the whole approach to
    tickets, with the goal of getting as close to a sellout as we can
    every week" (Mike O'Hara, DETROIT NEWS, 4/21).

    Print | Tags: Detroit Lions, Facilities, Green Bay Packers

         Arthur Griffiths, chair of Northwest Entertainment Group,
    unveiled a model of the new state-of-the-art scoreboard for GM
    Place.  The arena will be home to the Canucks and the expansion
    Grizzlies.  The Mitsubishi "Diamond Vision," an eight-sided
    scoreboard, will cost $6M.  The 62,000-pound video scoreboard has
    four 9-foot-by-12-foot full color screens, four monochrome
    message boards and will be controlled from a miniature TV studio.
    Only the Madison Square Garden, the new United Center, and Kiel
    Center have eight-sided video scoreboards.  As part of the
    sponsorship arrangement, Mitsubishi will also provide 499 TVs
    throughout GM Place.  NEG also announced a deal with sound system
    supplier Bose Corp., who will install 400 loudspeakers (Gary
    Kingston, VANCOUVER SUN, 4/21).  Griffiths, who recently endured
    a corporate restructuring, admitted yesterday it has been a tough
    year.  Griffiths:  "The most difficult emotion was realizing that
    in 24 months we had started the building, been awarded the
    franchise and then gone to the Cup final and all the incredible
    stress of keeping it together was so tough" (Tony Gallagher,
    Vancouver PROVINCE, 4/21).

    Print | Tags: Cablevision, Facilities, Madison Square Garden, Canucks Sports and Entertainment, Vancouver Canucks
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