So as you may recall, a 93-year-old Baltimore developer wants to build a new $500 million arena and hotel complex, alongside a $400 million convention center expansion that would be paid for by taxpayers. The arena/hotel, though, would be privately financed … except, now, for the bit where it wouldn’t actually be privately financed:
Donald C. Fry, CEO of the Greater Baltimore Committee, said his group still hopes to secure the necessary funds to privately finance both the arena and the hotel at the corner of Charles and Conway streets. But Fry, whose group is leading the fundraising efforts for the project, acknowledged public dollars may be needed…
“There is no doubt it is going to require some city and state financial commitment for the entire project, and maybe even the arena possibly,” Fry said.
Still, it’s tough to argue with the fact that Baltimore needs a new arena, as the old one is 50 years old and is, er, the top-grossing arena in the U.S. for its size? But anyway, without a new arena Baltimore will surely lose the, um, I mean, won’t be able to lure a, wait a minute. Does anybody remember why Baltimore supposedly needs a new arena?
“They’re doing a remarkable job. We just wonder how much better SMG could be doing with a bigger-size” arena, [Visit Baltimore CEO Tom] Noonan said.
Now there’s a question worth $900 million to answer.