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Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Orlando ups downtown ante

Orlando ups downtown ante - Orlando Sentinel : Orange County News

"This lays the foundation and the road map for the decisions that need to be made in the next few weeks," Dyer said.

Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer on Monday pledged $350 million in city money and land for a new performing-arts center, arena and renovated Florida Citrus Bowl -- roughly one-third the $1.1 billion cost.

He also touted a new study that predicts the three venues would create more than 10,000 construction jobs and pump billions into the economy, and unveiled a shortlist of potential sites for the new home court of the Orlando Magic.
It is a big, complex deal that will cost $1.1 billion for a new arena, performing arts center, private development and Citrus Bowl improvements. City, County & State governments keep pushing ahead, but have a ways to go.

4 Comments:

  • At 10:37 AM, Blogger Matt said…

    The problem is that the three components of the project have been placed on the same footing, importance-wise. Although the cost of building the “events center” is the highest, the center seems to be the most revenue-generating one, at least until more detailed studies prove it otherwise. The cost of constructing arts center seems on the high side and should be adjusted downward. Citrus Bowl renovation could also be done at a lower cost, making the overall cost of the project more acceptable to the county commissioners. The beneficiaries of the project also need to step in and commit some private funding, amongst which the silence of the Orlando Magic is the most troubling sign.

    The devotion of $350 million is a sign of good faith by Mayor Dyer, although the city does not have even one tenth of the county's resources. It is logical to think that the three components of the project should be bound together. You cannot move Citrus Bowl, and it is safe to assume that the right place for a performing arts center is downtown Orlando. Dyer is trying to keep the arena in downtown area, as well which again makes sense since the bulk of attendance is from the residents of metropolitan Orlando, not the tourists. Rosen has a different idea and is pushing Mayor Crotty in the direction of constructing the arena in tourist area of the south, which makes it a long trip for the residents on the north side of town. It seems that some of the sources of funding Dyer has put on the table, would not be available if the arena’s location is moved outside the city limits. There is a lot of politics to be played here, otherwise county can provide the funds needed through a host of options, amongst which are the increase of tourist tax (tough one), issuing bonds or borrowing based on projected future revenue.

     
  • At 12:51 AM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Certainly a very complicated project that is probably years away from finality, with all the funding and other details still to be worked out. But at least it's a start, and the city of Orlando certainly deserves something like that which is being talked about.

    Hopefully, the Magic organization will break their silence soon and will contribute their fair share in money towards all this.

     
  • At 4:08 AM, Blogger Ken said…

    Glad to be back online after my recent computer meltdown, damn computers... anyway..

    I agree that moving a new arena to the tourist district would be a major blunder. Its the locals who support the Magic, not the I-Drive and Disney crowd. The tourist district already has a billion dollar boon-doggle that can't even support itself called the Orange County Convention Center. I know, for me anyway, the drive from Volusia Co. would make me think twice before deciding if Iwanted to endure the added congestion of the tourist area compared to just getting off I-4 at Coloniel and voila, your there....

    It would be nice if we would hear something from the Magic organization in these early talks. I don't know, but I have a hunch that they are just sort of waiting this whole scenario out a bit. Perhaps to see how serious local officials are on the matter of a new arena. How much officials are willing to fund, and maybe to see how well these so-called leaders can work together. If Orlando wants to be considered as they say a, "world class city" then they need to learn to get these projects done. Not just argue and bitch and listen to people like Mike Thomas of the Slantinel...

     
  • At 1:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    If anyone has any contacts at the Magic HQ. Would you forward this please. This is the same community as the one Dwight Howard lives on. Thanks.

    http://orlando.craigslist.org/apa/266108783.html

     

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