SBD/Issue 177/Facilities & VenuesPrint All
The concept of "building a football stadium in downtown Los Angeles" is "picking up steam with some influential people in NFL circles," according to Sam Farmer of the L.A. TIMES. The downtown concept is "in direct competition with one in the city of Industry," but it "got a noteworthy thumbs-up" yesterday from Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones. Jones said AEG President & CEO Tim Leiweke, who along with WMG Chair & CEO Casey Wasserman recently floated plans to build a downtown stadium, "has the utmost respect in the National Football League, and I have the most respect for everybody involved." Jones: "With all of that in mind, and with a real passion to have a team in Los Angeles, I like the way this thing is starting to sound. ... It makes a lot of sense for downtown Los Angeles. It's what you're looking for" (LATIMES.com, 5/25).
While Chargers Prefer Downtown San Diego
Site, Team Has Not Ruled Out Escondido
LOCATION, LOCATION: In California, Jay Paris writes the Chargers and San Diego's "movers and shakers" would "prefer plopping Qualcomm Stadium's replacement near Petco Park and the bustling Gaslamp Quarter." But Chargers Special Counsel Mark Fabiani said Escondido's 60-acre site "absolutely" could come back into play. The city suspended its pursuit of the team, but Fabiani said, "We would definitely go back to Escondido, there is no question, because the city leadership, business community and neighborhood groups were extremely enthusiastic." Paris writes Escondido's "parcels of land near I-15 and Highway 78 hold promise," though it is "not as attractive ... as kicking off in a playpen hugging San Diego Bay." But "how to cobble the funds remains the downtown spot's biggest obstacle" (NORTH COUNTY TIMES, 5/26).
Chicago City Council Committee Unanimously
Approves Permit For Toyota Sign At Wrigley
The Chicago City Council Committee on Buildings yesterday "unanimously approved a permit for the illuminated, 360-square-foot" Toyota sign planned for Wrigley Field, according to Ameet Sachdev of the CHICAGO TRIBUNE. The committee's approval "was expected" after Chicago Alderman Tom Tunney, whose district is home to Wrigley Field, "changed his mind about the sign and voiced his support." In exchange for Tunney's backing, the Cubs "have agreed to a four-year moratorium on new signs above the bleachers between the foul poles." Sachdev writes that "seems like a minor compromise for the Cubs." The permit "must still be approved by the City Council." Cubs officials are "hoping to receive authorization at the council's next meeting on June 9," and if that happens, the team "could erect the sign in time for the start of [the] team's series with the White Sox on June 11" (CHICAGOBREAKINGSPORTS.com, 5/25). The sign will "feature the Japanese automaker's logo and name in block letters" (CHICAGOBUSINESS.com, 5/25).
Giants, Partners Have Six Years To Get Approvals
Needed To Begin Work On Rock District Plans
The MLB Giants' plan to "build a new Mission Rock District -- and possibly a new home for the Golden State Warriors -- next to AT&T Park got enthusiastic support Tuesday" from S.F.'s Port Commission, "even though any construction is probably years away," according to John Wildermuth of the S.F. CHRONICLE. Under terms of the agreement, which was approved unanimously, the Giants and their development partners "have up to six years to get the approvals needed before the first bulldozer can begin work on the 16-acre bayfront tract now leased from the port" as the AT&T's parking lot. The nation's "economic slump is behind the slow-moving nature of the project, which originally was scheduled to break ground by 2013." Since the Port Commission agreed last May to "award the development rights to the team led by the Giants, two of that group's six partners -- Kenwood Investments and Stockbridge Capital -- have pulled out." The Warriors, who are up for sale, are the "wild card in the development deck." Because the Giants are "said to be one of the bidders for the Warriors, a multipurpose arena could be part of the final development plan." Giants Senior VP & General Counsel Jack Bair "tiptoed past any arena questions." He said, "If the opportunity presents itself, we will explore it. ... We'd like to see development that is synergetic to the ballpark and that fits in with the neighborhood" (S.F. CHRONICLE, 5/26).
Cuban's 175-Acre Wonderview Development
Will Cost Between An Estimated $600M-1B
Hill & Wilkinson Senior VP Jeff Sanders said that construction on the first phase of Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban's Wonderview development in Dallas is "slated to begin June 1," according to Bill Hethcock in a front-page piece for the DALLAS BUSINESS JOURNAL. The project, offering a 175-acre "mix of sports facilities, corporate offices, residential and retail space," will cost between an estimated $600M-1B and "be developed during the next decade." Wonderview also includes plans for a 300,000-500,000-square-foot office component, "anchored by a 180,000-square-foot headquarters for Mark Cuban Cos." The development will "house practice facilities" for the Mavericks, in addition to "condominiums and apartments, medical facilities, a senior care center, movie production facilities and 18 acres of walking trails and other green spaces." Mark Cuban Cos. Dir of Real Estate Services Joe Cavagnaro said that Cuban "doesn't plan to use third-party financing for the project." He added that building the development "in Dallas' southern sector makes sense because Cuban already sponsors the Mark Cuban Heroes Basketball Center just west of the Wonderview site." David Craig, who developed Dallas-area sports and recreation complex Craig Ranch, said that Cuban's "biggest challenge" with Wonderview "will be managing the expectations from the city and the neighborhoods surrounding Wonderview's site" (DALLAS BUSINESS JOURNAL, 5/21 issue).