SBD/8/Facilities Venues

DID MEGAPLEX COMMISSION GIVE PATS TOO GOOD OF A DEAL?

     A survey of NFL lease deals by the BOSTON HERALD shows that
while the Patriots "will make bigger annual payments than other
teams to play in a new megaplex, the team could also reap far
greater revenues than those other franchises."  According to
projections prepared for the megaplex commission, the Patriots --
 who will pay $5M a year for 25 years plus day-of-event operating
costs -- will gross nearly $42M a year.  Under the deal -- which
is not yet a final lease -- the Pats keep all concession, ticket,
premium seat and other revenue from football and up to 20 non-NFL
events a year.  Analysts noted, while comparing NFL leases is
difficult, "it is rare, if not unique, for a team to control the
revenue flow from as many non-NFL events as granted the
Patriots."  Khalil Johnson, manager of the Georgia Dome, whose
Falcons lease was used as a model in Boston, said that despite
the Patriots' up-front payments, the deal "could leave the public
more exposed than the Falcons lease."  Johnson:  "We assure that
the debt service and operating costs are covered before the team
participates in revenues. ... Based on the raw numbers, the
public sector [in MA] has a significant amount of frontside
exposition while a significant amount of dollars will be made by
the team."  Patriots VP Jonathan Kraft argues that there is
"substantial risk," since revenue could decline if the team fares
poorly or events are not booked.  Kraft also noted that the dome
will be available to the state for other uses outside of the 30
Patriots-run events.  Kraft:  "We have it just 10 percent of the
time, but we are covering significantly more than 10 percent of
the debt service on the facility.  We feel we are doing our fair
share" (Phil Primack, BOSTON HERALD, 6/8).
     CROSS TOWN RIVAL:  FleetCenter/Bruins Owner Jeremy Jacobs is
taking an "active interest" in the megaplex debate, according to
Meg Vaillancourt in the BOSTON GLOBE.  Jacobs has formally
requested information about the project from the Weld
administration as he is considering investing in the project.
New Boston Garden Corp. President Larry Moulter:  "We're looking
at a variety of approaches.  Certainly our experience in
financing, building and operating a sports facility in Boston
suggest we'd have something to bring to the table."  Vaillancourt
indicates Jacobs is concerned that a megaplex dome would compete
with FleetCenter for certain events (BOSTON GLOBE, 6/7).
     THE DONALD-PLEX?  The GLOBE's Joan Vennochi reports that
Donald Trump is working with former Boston city councillor
Michael McCormack to put together a consortium of business people
to possibly include a real estate development with casino in the
megaplex (BOSTON GLOBE, 6/7).
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