Bankrupt Detroit is building a hockey arena because it’s out of actual good ideas

Bloomberg News ran a nice summary of the “Detroit is building a new arena for the Red Wings even while it’s going bankrupt” controversy yesterday, most of it covering ground we’ve already discussed here. But it does include one truly epic quote from Detroit emergency fiscal manager Kevyn Orr:

“There’s always a debate about does this really pan out?” Orr, the emergency manager, said in a July 25 interview. “The reality is we are so needy of some economic development, I can’t see how we don’t pursue it because if we don’t, what’s left?”

Um, how about pretty much anything else?


8 comments on “Bankrupt Detroit is building a hockey arena because it’s out of actual good ideas

  1. That article was published around the same time the “Fix Syria? We can’t even fix Detroit” meme began circulating. Dunno whether that’s ironic, sad, amusing, or all of the above.

  2. Maybe what Syria needs is a new stadium? Bring the people together for football spectacles in Damascus and they will stop fighting.

    Probably cheaper than dropping bombs on them. Where is AEG when you need them?

  3. It’s sad that the same people cheering the fact that union pensions are being slashed by this bankruptcy are also cheering the fact that a billionaire owner is getting an amazing deal for a new hockey arena. I am more willing than most on this site to accept public financing in a new stadium, but to say the timing of this deal is poor would be a major understatement. Real people are getting screwed here

  4. Nice idea QCIC,
    There’s also a big problem in Egypt with too many idle hands. They already have pyramids, so maybe they can add some stadiums (even if they are only good for about 30 years).

    Frankly I’d have preferred a pyramid in Santa Clara.

  5. @ Ben-
    Ben, I have yet to see on this website or ANY website,book, or economic study that can prove the merit of taxpayer financing being a benefit to the taxpayer when handing over MILLIONS in taxpayers dollars to millionaires & billionaires for a privately owned sports franchise. The economic benefits touted NEVER come to fruition…again, and again, the public financing of privately owned sports stadiums simply does NOT provide a ROI to the taxpayer.
    Here in Chicago, the rubber stamp City Council (who does NO debating WHATSOEVER…whether it was the previous Mayor Richie Daley, or the new Daley…Rahm Emmanuel) approved MILLIONS in TIF funding for a PRIVATE college (DePaul University) to build a basketball arena (& hotel/convention center) in the South Loop area…a basketball arena that NO ONE WANTS…including majority of DePaul students & some faculty…and for a team that NO ONE watches/follows…so taxpayer funds are going to buy up land that is increasing in value…this land now WON’T pay property tax, because it will be government owned, and a few 1,000 jobs (temporary construction jobs + permanent service/hotel jobs…and we all know how they pay) will be created and Emmanuel has a news conference touting the Chicago-DePaul partnership. He may as well have extended his middle finger to all the taxpayers.
    This country has become a Plutocracy, plain & simple.
    Details on Chicago DePaul boondoggle –
    http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/depaul-basketball-arena-hotels-south-loop-tif-rahm-emanuel/Content?oid=10855117

  6. Dan;

    I recall news stories about major property tax issues in Evanston and surrounds… chiefly because the city does not charge property taxes (or perhaps charges at a dramatically lower rate?) for “educational” buildings.

    Unfortunately, it defines anything owned by an educational institution as an educational facility, so NW has been buying up commercial properties like it’s going out of style… knowing they can rent them cheaper than the previous owners because of the tax implications. The net loss of tax revenue from this loophole is crippling the city, if the news stories are to be believed… and no-one says “wait just a darned minute here…”

    Chicago itself doesn’t have a monopoly on idiocy in administration and governance, but it sure does have it in spades.