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The Arizona Sports & Tourism Authority and the city of Glendale have “sealed a deal to finance $53.9[M] in improvements” around the NFL Cardinals’ new stadium, according to Pat Flannery of the ARIZONA REPUBLIC. The agreement permits “roughly $33[M] in bonds to be sold” by the end of November to help finance new roads, sewers, utilities, parking lots and other infrastructure around the stadium. Bond funds will be combined with money from the Cardinals, the state Department of Transportation, Glendale and the Fiesta Bowl “to pay for the various external projects,” which include a new half-interchange and a bridge. The bonds “will be issued by the sports authority and retired over 30 years, using city sales-tax revenue from stadium activities pledged to the authority by Glendale and parking surcharges added to tickets for stadium events.” The stadium is “more than a third” finished and on track to open in August ’06. The agreement was the “last major piece of the construction puzzle to fall into place” (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 10/8).
Is Arlington Big Enough
For The Both Of Them?
MLB Rangers Owner Tom Hicks and Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones are “hammering out an agreement on how to peacefully coexist if Arlington voters agree to help fund a Cowboys stadium” near Ameriquest Field, according to Sean Wood of the FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM. The Rangers have begun developing the area around Ameriquest Field, and Hicks and Jones “are working on what would eventually become a master agreement to ensure that their development interests are protected.” Hicks: “We wanted to make sure there wasn’t anything that was involved in their [stadium] that would prevent us from doing our development.” Arlington Mayor Robert Cluck said that the city has not been involved in the talks “other than to encourage dialogue.” Hicks added that he met with Jones and his son, Cowboys Exec VP & COO Stephen Jones, and that both teams “agreed they would have their staff and consultants work together to ensure the interests of each side were represented” (STAR-TELEGRAM, 10/8).
PROPERTY OF THE COWBOYS: In Ft. Worth, L. Lamor Williams notes the proposed stadium plan makes the building a “public facility and therefore exempt from property taxes. The team would pay taxes on the land, but the property would be assessed and then frozen at preconstruction value” (FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 10/8). In Dallas, Toya Lynn Stewart reports the Arlington School District Thursday voted unanimously to approve a 30-year deal with the Cowboys “that would guarantee that the district would suffer no financial losses” as a result of the property tax situation. Under the deal, the Cowboys “would reimburse the school district each year for property taken off the tax rolls plus an annual 5.75[%] increase for the money the district would typically earn through property value escalation” (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 10/8).
Ratner About 80% Done With Acquisitions
Nets Owner Bruce Ratner “now owns 80% of the condo and co-op apartments that are on the footprint of his $2.5[B] Atlantic Yards project” in Brooklyn, which includes a new Nets arena, according to Hugh Son of the N.Y. DAILY NEWS. Ratner in May offered condo residents at 636 Pacific St. more than $1M each to leave, and pledged to other displaced tenants that they would be the first to move into the new apartments when they are built and would not “pay any more in rent than they have been paying” (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 10/8). In N.Y., Patrick Gallahue reports Ratner on Thursday began outlining “a series of pledges” for the proposed development, which would include low-income housing, local jobs, small-business development, a community center and a foundation to benefit area residents. Ratner: “From the beginning, we said this project is more than just basketball” (N.Y. POST, 10/8).
SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL’s Don Muret in a special to THE DAILY reports Turner Construction has been awarded the contract to build a $70M stadium for the MLS Chicago Fire in Bridgeview, Illinois. The facility, which will be designed by Rossetti Associates, will have 20,000-25,000 seats and is scheduled to open in ’06 (THE DAILY).
GETTING THEIR FIX? In New Orleans, Anderson & Donze report Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco for the first time on Thursday indicated that she “wants the Saints to contribute to any renovations” of the Superdome. Blanco told the Superdome Commission the “only way I would even entertain making a big investment right now” in renovating the stadium is with help from the club. Blanco during meetings with local officials added that there “seems to be a growing sentiment to renovate the Superdome” as opposed to building a new stadium (New Orleans TIMES-PICAYUNE, 10/8).
AHEAD OF THE PACE: In Louisville, Marcus Green reports Churchill Downs’ renovation is “slightly ahead of schedule [and] the track plans to open much of the new clubhouse for the fall meet.” The new clubhouse will seat 800 people and feature about 200 TVs on its second floor. Green notes some of the area was previewed briefly during the spring “before being shut down as construction resumed after the Kentucky Derby” (Louisville COURIER-JOURNAL, 10/8).