SBD/March 29, 2011/Facilities

Facility Notes

In Boston, Jerry Kronenberg reported Ace Ticket is moving to a $3M Kenmore Square HQs, "complete with a high-tech ticket kiosk, barely a long home run away from Fenway Park." Ace recently bought $2M of Commonwealth Avenue commercial space "across the street from Kenmore's landmark Citgo sign to serve as the company's new base." The firm also "intends to build a $750,000 storefront at the site in the next few months," offering what Ace Owner Jim Holzman called the "most modern, technologically advanced ticket location anywhere in the world." Planned amenities include "special video screens that will let customers preview exactly what they’ll see from any seat in Fenway or other venues." Ace "expects to relocate 22 employees to the Kenmore site." The firm also is "expanding into selling tickets over the Web to events in other cities, although it currently only has kiosks" in Boston (BOSTON HERALD, 3/28).

CONTINGENCY PLAN: In Pittsburgh, Jeremy Boren reported the Pittsburgh-Allegheny County Sports & Exhibition Authority "would tap into a reserve of ticket surcharges for the first time since" Heinz Field opened in August '01 if the NFL lockout "sacks the 2010-11 football season." Allegheny Regional Asset District Dir David Donahoe, whose organization pays $13.4M yearly toward debt for the $281M Heinz Field and PNC Park, said that the SEA "prepared for an NFL work stoppage." Each Steelers ticket sold "includes a surcharge equivalent to 5 percent of its value, up to $3 a ticket." SEA Exec Dir Mary Conturo said that each year, the authority "collects more than it needs for the $1.5 million debt payment from Steelers home games and other events," and the "excess goes into a reserve account that pays for stadium improvements" (Pittsburgh TRIBUNE-REVIEW, 3/25).

OPEN SECRET: In N.Y., Doyle & Bennett reported the USTA has announced that the Billie Jean King Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows Park "will get a brand-new 3,000-seat stadium to complement its three existing arenas." The N.Y. Parks Department said that it "wouldn't require any public money and would not change the current borders beyond the 46.5 acres the tennis center already has." USTA Managing Dir of Corporate Communications Chris Widmaier said that the new stadium "could be ready for side matches at this summer's U.S. Open and will definitely open by 2012" (N.Y. POST, 3/28).
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