SBD/December 18, 2012/Facilities

UConn Considers Submitting Bid To Take Over Management Of Rentschler Field

UConn is still gathering data on potentially managing 40,000-seat Rentschler Field
UConn "may get into the stadium management business at Rentschler Field in East Hartford," according to Kenneth Gosselin of the HARTFORD COURANT. UConn, which has "a 20-year lease on the stadium for its football program, told the Capital Region Development Authority that it is exploring the possibility of submitting a formal plan to manage the stadium." The letter came yesterday, the "deadline for submitting bids to the CRDA for managing Rentschler and the XL Center in downtown Hartford." It is "not a formal bid, but reserving the right to further explore the issue, guaranteed to them under the terms of their lease." But the university is "still gathering data, so it doesn’t yet know if managing the 40,000-seat sports and entertainment arena would be a benefit to UConn." Under the terms of its lease, UConn has the "responsibility to cover any deficits if they occur, but it doesn’t have control over recruitment of other users, concessions, maintenance and other matters." Three entities "submitted bids to manage both venues," including AEG, Capital Region Sports & Entertainment Group, led by Bushnell Management, and Global Spectrum. A preliminary recommendation to the CRDA’s board is "expected in early January with a final decision expected in February." Two other "potential bidders who had expressed interest" -- Harbor Yard Sports & Entertainment and SMG Worldwide -- "did not submit bids for either venue" (COURANT.com, 12/17).
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