SBD/21/Facilities Venues

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         The MI Strategic Fund yesterday approved a $55M grant to
    help pay for a new ballpark for the Tigers in the Fox Theatre
    district near downtown, and they set a "strict timetable" for
    completion, according to today's DETROIT NEWS.  The city
    reportedly "must approve" its $35M share of stadium financing by
    the year's end, and construction "must begin" by April 1, "or the
    state will pull its money back."  The Tigers must also come up
    with $140M.  Lynn Waldsmith notes, among other things, the city
    will refinance existing Downtown Development Authority bonds to
    raise its share of funding.  James Tervo, an aide to Mayor Dennis
    Archer, predicted the city council will meet its deadline.  Under
    terms of the grant: 1)  No more than $25M would be allocated for
    land acquisition -- the remaining $30M must be spent on public
    infrastructure;  2) The Tigers must sign an occupancy agreement
    for not less than 15 years by December 31;  3) The Strategic Fund
    must be repaid if the public stadium is sold or transferred to a
    private entity (DETROIT NEWS, 9/21).

    Print | Tags: Detroit Tigers, Facilities, News Corp./Fox

         Chicago Mayor Richard Daley has asked K.C.-based sports
    architectural firm, HOK, to draft an overhaul plan for Soldier
    Field similar to what was done for the Gator Bowl,  according to
    in today's CHICAGO SUN-TIMES.  Park District Supt. Forrest
    Claypool said yesterday that a rehab, along with "more favorable
    terms for the Bears, could take place without raising property
    taxes or jeopardizing the park budget."  HOK is expected to draft
    a renovation that does not include rotating the playing field 90
    degrees, but closer to the plan that was scrapped in '93.  That
    project included 4,000 premium-priced club seats, enlarged
    skyboxes, new washrooms, concessions and a high-tech scoreboard
    (Spielman & Drell, CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 9/21).

    Print | Tags: Chicago Bears, Facilities

         A day after oilman Chuck Watson bought operating rights to
    The Summit and proposed $45M in improvements be financed with
    taxpayer and team funds, Houston Mayor Bob Lanier said his
    "longstanding opposition" to using public funds on a new football
    stadium also applies to improvements to the Summit.  The mayor,
    however, did leave open the possibility of some form of public
    financing for renovations, "with a sanction from taxpayers"
    (Mason & Williams HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 9/21).

    Print | Tags: Facilities

         Proponents of a new baseball stadium in Seattle said
    yesterday that they "hope to propose at least one more financing
    plan" if voters reject the current effort (AP/Baltimore SUN,
    9/21)....Local and state representatives from Racine County, WI,
    have said the county "is not part of the Milwaukee metro area."
    They oppose including the county in a taxing district needed to
    help pay for a new Brewers stadium (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL,
    9/21)....Murray Chass reports NJ officials "have been careful not
    to initiate formal talks" about the Yankees moving there, lest
    they be viewed "as trying to steal the team."  Yankees Owner
    George Steinbrenner said that the team "is interested in anyone
    who will talk to us" (N.Y. TIMES, 9/21).

    Print | Tags: Facilities, Milwaukee Brewers, New York Yankees, YankeeNets
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