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New Red Wings arena financing approved

Jul 24, 2013, 5:21 PM EDT

Joe Louis Arena Getty Images

Despite the city of Detroit having filed for bankruptcy, the Michigan Strategic Fund today approved the Detroit Downtown Development Authority’s request to use millions of dollars in taxpayer money to help build a new downtown arena for the Red Wings.

Per the Associated Press, Gov. Rick Snyder defended the decision as one that’s good for the future of the insolvent city.

“As we stabilize the city government’s finances, as we address those issues and improve services, Detroit moves from a place where people might have had a negative impression — although there are great things already going on — to being a place that will be recognized across the world as a place of great value and a place to invest,” said Snyder.

The $450 million arena is expected to be 58% publicly financed, according to the Detroit Free Press.

The arena’s completion is slated for 2017.

A new downtown home for the Wings has been the subject of speculation for years. The team’s present home, Joe Louis Arena, opened in 1979.

  1. somekat - Jul 24, 2013 at 5:52 PM

    That makes sense, it takes an hour for the cops to show up on average, but they are going to have a nice new hockey arena

    Rome is burning, but lets go to the games, lol

    • polegojim - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:14 PM

      Somekat… you don’t get it man.

      The two have nothing to do with each other.

      • somekat - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:34 AM

        a bankrupt city spending hundreds of millions of dollars on a hockey arena

        your right, one has nothing to do with the other. Your whole city “don’t get it man”. Which is why it is literally in the toilet

      • shoobiedoobin - Jul 25, 2013 at 12:33 PM

        ^Ever been there somekid? Something tells me you’re another sheltered internet stooge who visualizes the city looking like GTA while burning to the ground. Meanwhile in reality, it’s not nearly that bad. There are problems but living there vs hearing about it online, man, two completely different worlds. But that’s how people are, especially when they’re concealed by the internet and get to make comments they’d NEVER live up to face to face-Texas is full of idiot hicks. Tennessee is full of inbreds. Etc etc etc. We turn everything into a caricature of reality.

        And no, not spending on an arena won’t make cops show up any quicker. I now live in a city with a ridiculous amount of cash kicking around and our cops don’t show up any faster. The arena will make money, create jobs and help build and maintain stability.

        But schmucks like you become city planners when it’s time to get that sweet, sweet rush from judging something or someone.

      • somekat - Jul 25, 2013 at 4:24 PM

        Yes, on business, I’ve been to most major cities. There are some exception, detorit, unfortunately is not one of them. I’ve never had the displeasure of living tehre (how anyone could is the winter is beyond me), but i have been there several time for 1-2 week periods.

        Its a hole, if you think it “isnt that bad” clearly you’ve never lived anywhere else

      • shoobiedoobin - Jul 25, 2013 at 5:45 PM

        ^I call bs. What, were you just going to admit you’ve never been there? Right.

        I’ve lived in multiple countries, in various classes from poor to middle class, and I’ve been around enough to know little turds like you want to judge what you don’t know because joining in on the public beating makes you feel big. It’s. Not. That. Bad. Period. I lived in the burbs, downtown, outside downtown, everywhere. The biggest laugh I get is from clowns like you who think they can follow the sheep and not have real experienced folks call you out. It’s only a “hole” if you’re a spoiled little brat. I’ve wandered downtown Detroit at all hours of the night without feeling threatened once. There’s more genuine, good people there than you’d know having never been.

        You reek of fake and it’s only you who doesn’t realize it.

    • sabatimus - Jul 25, 2013 at 5:52 PM

      Taxpayer-funded arenas oughta shampoo my crotch.

  2. vshehane - Jul 24, 2013 at 6:06 PM

    Sounds like a solid investment. LOL

    • polegojim - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:16 PM

      actually Vshe… there’s no LOL about it… it’s an awesome long term investement.

      Have you seen the plans? The related revenue?? The overall return???

      Where would Detroit be WITHOUT revenue from Red Wings and Tigers?

      • somekat - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:36 AM

        considering the revenue comes from the citizens of Detroit, I’d say in the same spot. You must be using go go gadget arms to be able to reach far enough to suggest that a sports franchise can keep a city afloat

      • shoobiedoobin - Jul 25, 2013 at 12:36 PM

        ^And to think, I thought you were a clueless idiot after reading ONE comment from you. How many more winners do you have in store? Only scrolling down will tell!

    • polegojim - Jul 26, 2013 at 10:06 AM

      Others seeing opportunity as well –

      For those who think ‘entrepreneur’ is a dirty word… ‘making money’ on opportunity is bad… and rich people are ‘vultures’… please remember this:

      1) we live in a republic where capitalism IS the lifes-blood
      2) capitalism pays for taxes and entrepreneurs create societies taxable revenue… for this reason, every level of government works to create capitalistic and entrepreneurial opportunities in targeted areas of cities, states, and the country.
      3) your job exists by them; you work for a company started by them… and that INCLUDES government jobs – nothing defines the ‘entrepreneurial spirit’ better than a country start-up.
      4) your livelihood and savings were created by them
      5) your family eats and sleeps under-cover because of them
      6) the car you drive and the gas you put in it came through them on BOTH sides
      7) I HOPE you’re encouraging your children to be them and create opportunity for others… and create personal wealth in the interim… maybe even A LOT of it… for their family.

  3. jakreidler - Jul 24, 2013 at 6:14 PM

    Quicken Loans arena. Mark my words now.

    • missthemexpos - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:15 PM

      Repo Man Arena.

      • soldierone - Jul 24, 2013 at 11:22 PM

        Located in Bankrupt Plaza

        All that statues and roads in front will also be named after insurance, Car, or cell phone companies.

        “Take a left at Gieco Street, then continue to Nationwide Insurance Road, and look for the Verizon Wireless Horse Statue”

  4. ravenscaps48 - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:37 PM

    How does a city that files for bankruptcy get the financing approved for a multi-million dollar arena?

    • polegojim - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:24 PM

      Look up Development/ReDevelopment entities.

      It’s an investment for the future. Cities receive FAR more overall benefit than the amount they invest.

      Detroit makes money from this because of the Red Wings. This is a very good deal for the City.

      • somekat - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:37 AM

        go go gadget arms!

    • clefty1 - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:53 AM

      The project will create jobs. The arena is not the only thing that is going up, there will be housing, restaurants and retail as well. The Wings along with the Tigers and Lions generate revenue for the city.

      • paperkid96 - Jul 25, 2013 at 12:55 PM

        This link explains it in more detail. The funds being used are set up for the sole purpose of dowtown developement.

  5. bruinsfan1953 - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:41 PM

    If Boston tried to do this I’d be pissed .

    • clefty1 - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:48 AM

      Do you think the Bruins owner paid for TD Gardens? Get a clue!

      • shoobiedoobin - Jul 25, 2013 at 12:53 PM


  6. takingbovadasmoney - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:01 PM

    The funding doesn’t come from the general budget. The money comes from the DDA. The DDA is a body set up to collect tax money from businesses and reinvest it within its boundaries. By law the money can not be spent outside of the boundaries of the DDA. DDA money is spent on police positions. They patrol within the DDA boundaries. Yes, Boston has the same type agency called, Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA). I believe they did help in the funding of TD Gardens.

    • polegojim - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:22 PM

      Thank you thank you thank you. I got tired of trying to explain it.

      It’s AMAZING how many people responded to this without ounce of knowledge about the entities involved or the process.

      • somekat - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:40 AM

        it’s amazing that they are taking funds from a totally underfunded police department and using them towards and arena. The explanation above only makes the whole idea more ridiculous and irresponsible

    • somekat - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:39 AM

      does boston take an hour to answer a 911 call?


      Then who cares if the system is set up the same way? One city has the funds/tax base, one doesn’t. Just like you can’t budget the same way a billionaire can, a broke city can’t budget the same way as a city that isn’t broke…yet

      • shoobiedoobin - Jul 25, 2013 at 12:38 PM

        Kid, just stop. He’s making sense, you’re not. You’re in over your head trying to explain things you barely understand on the surface.

  7. takingbovadasmoney - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:17 PM

    pogo- In fairness, Tom Walsh, the Free Press Business writer, who wrote the linked article, doesn’t even understand the DDA concept, which is pretty fu–ing poor considering he writes about business. The guy completely butchered it in the article.

    • polegojim - Jul 25, 2013 at 12:34 AM

      Ok… so how does that make it a bad deal? I know a lot of businessmen who have NEVER dealt with this kind of financing or funding. It’s NOT a bad deal.

      My beef is that ignorance is the call of the day… and what they don’t understand… they hate???

      Cmon man – educate yourself with facts… then post… don’t jump on the ignorance bandwagon.

      I’ll bet almost ALL posting negatively here have no idea it’s NOT just an arena… not even remotely… it’s a redevelopment AREA… it’s HOUSING… RETAIL… LEASES… RENTALS… but no… they just jump on the bandwagon.

      • shoobiedoobin - Jul 25, 2013 at 12:42 PM

        They’re ignorant morons and it’s the internet. They’re anonymous and it’s proven the human brain releases happy chemicals upon judgment of someone or something.

        I’d be more shocked if these turds DIDN’T jump on the bandwagon and pretend to be knowledgeable about this.

      • polegojim - Jul 25, 2013 at 11:07 PM

        Yes Shoobie… you’re right… that syndrome is running rampant on this article.

        Go RED WINGS…

        Go New Arena…

        GO DETROIT… time to start rebuilding… it will be painful.

  8. s2mikey - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:18 PM

    I don’t care what the details are. There is NO reason why trillionaire owners can’t fork over the cash for their own damned stadiums. It’s really, really, absurd. But, it happens everywhere. It still looks fishy, regardless of where or how the money gets there. C’mon.

    • cheliostwin - Jul 30, 2013 at 11:58 PM

      But it will be a multi-use facility, just like Joe Louis Arena. I’ve seen several rock concerts at JLA, as well as one at Cobo Arena, where the Wings briefly played while JLA was being built. This new complex will benefit the city more than it will the owners of the Red Wings, a family which already dumps millions of dollars into developing Detroit and benefiting its inhabitants.

  9. takingbovadasmoney - Jul 24, 2013 at 10:05 PM

    In theory, I agree. Don’t like corporate welfare either. In terms of the deal being fishy, not sure what you mean. DDAs pay for new sidewalks, streetscapes, and building enhancements. Also loans money for renovations and projects such as this. Nothing from govt entity or its budget.

  10. helloname01 - Jul 24, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    I will miss watching all of their dbag fans in the lower bowl spend the whole game standing up and waiving at the camera. Now hopefully only the bottom handful of rows will be visible.

  11. soldierone - Jul 24, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    Wow. City goes bankrupt, so lets build a new arena! …..

    Its going to be hard to make Detroit a “great experience” when crime rates stay sky high and your police force comes second to a hockey arena that isn’t even needed…..

    • polegojim - Jul 25, 2013 at 12:37 AM

      Read the previous posts before writing Soldier… not the same thing at all.

      As a matter of fact, tax revenue generated by the City.. FROM this redevelopment.. can actually FUND more police and city services… something the current tax base alone CAN NOT DO.

      • somekat - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:44 AM

        Where is the team collecting this revenue from? The citizens of Detroit? Oh, so the city is in the exact same spot? Oh, I get it now

        You act like it’s going to bring in tourism and new money

        How about spending 250 million on making your city not looks like it was evacuated due to a nuclear disaster, THEN worrying about “redeveloping” the hockey arena.

        Going for the DC look I guess, beautiful square mile, surrounded by 10 square miles of ghetto

    • clefty1 - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:59 AM

      Have you thought about how much revenue the Wings bring to the city? Have you ever been to the Joe? My guess is you have never been there. It is outdated. The seats are cramped, the stairs are small, the consession area is a pain and there are not enough bathrooms and unless one parks in the Joe parking garage you have to hike up stairs to get into the arena which can be dangerous in the winter and a pain for people that may have a handicap.

      • cheliostwin - Jul 31, 2013 at 12:03 AM

        Several years ago the Detroit Free Press reported that every game the Wings play at JLA brings over a million dollars into downtown Detroit. Tickets, concessions, parking, gas stations, bars, restaurants all benefit from the Wings playing downtown. The point of the article was how fortunate the city was that the Wings enjoy long playoff runs, playing more games at the Joe than come in the regular season.

  12. whiskytango333 - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:37 AM

    Meanwhile, a perfectly servicable 20,000 seat arena could be utilized up in Auburn Hills.

    • jakreidler - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:48 AM

      That would bring all those revenues to Auburn Hills, not Detroit.

      • polegojim - Jul 25, 2013 at 11:10 PM

        Exactly Jak… oh THAT would surely help Detroit, eh Whisky???

        Sheesh… CMON man… put the bottle down and focus.

    • clefty1 - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:54 AM

      In case you missed it the Palace is the Pistons home which is out in the middle of nowhere.

  13. joejoefromchicago - Jul 25, 2013 at 11:11 AM

    Anyone ANYONE that has a negative thing to say about this is totally uninformed and utterly stupid! Please do some research about the funding and what it’s all about. The DDA’s investment is in the surrounding area and not in the arena itself! Furthermore Mr Illitch/Illitch Holdings/Litter Ceasars Pizza/Olympia Entertainment/Tigers/Red Wings/ ect is heavily invested in the city of Detroit. Without Mr Illitch and family Detroit would be in even more dire straits then it already is… Plus how do you revive a broken city without investing in it’s rebuilding/rehab? What company is going to come in and spend millions upon millions without any hope of return on their investment?

  14. jdubfla - Jul 25, 2013 at 2:40 PM

    Meanwhile the owner of the Cubs spends his OWN money to completely renovate Wrigley. And the owner of the Lightning in Tampa did the same thing as well.

    • joejoefromchicago - Jul 25, 2013 at 4:43 PM

      The Ricketts family is rehabing the park and building 1 building across the street. Have you been to JLA? It’s beyond just rehab-repair while I love it’s “charm” and will miss it a new facility is long over due! Illitch is paying to build the arena with his own money its the slum he’s building it in that the DDA is going to fund.

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