Monday, February 23, 2009

No Arena at Austin Road?

It's increasingly likely that this won't happen

The DDN reports that the county administrator is recommending against an arena due to cost and lack of financing options (the lack of a hotel tax to subsidize the arena).

The argument that an ice rink would somehow make Austin Road more attractive to business was always questionable. There might have been an indirect effect of the arena drawing in food and drink places which would then draw in business, but this was never explicitly stated. The case was never sufficiently made by the county or RG Enterprises as to how this was to actually work as a lure for business to chose Austin Road over other I-75 interchanges.

The focus will now shift to try to build a downtown arena on Dave Hall Plaza, and one can anticipate finance being an issue, too, if the intent is to build something more than an enhanced pre-engineered building.

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