I’ve been trying to figure out the last 24 hours and something doesn’t add up. I’ve been googling things like “provincial government says it won’t get involved in arena discussions unless there’s a fracture in negotiations” but can’t find it.
On the face of it, this makes little sense. Daryl Katz had an exceptional deal–one that went too far by most estimates–and clearly didn’t want to proceed. Mayor Mandel burned a lot of political capital to get the deal as far as it went, and there’s no guarantee he’ll have all of council on board next time. In fact, there’s genuine bad blood in the water now based on what we heard yesterday from city hall.
What is the fracture? Where is the disconnect? I can think of only a couple:
- The increasing cost projections meant both sides had to find a way to back out, and instead of admitting it the Katz group decided to dump it all on Mandel.
- The two sides privately decided that they needed a third chair at the table, and feel this might pressure another level of government into the conversation (beyond the current level).
- There are money problems on one side or another at a more basic level.
- Daryl Katz is working off a completely original script.
Beyond that, I offer the following post from last night’s thread:
- SLIDERULE: I was talking to a friend about what Katz is up to on the arena with all these new demands.My friend who has built up and sold several large businesses over his lifetime immediately said that he has cold feet and wants out.
We agreed the main problem is the building is too damn expensive.Making a world class statement by swooping lines and zinc coating has run the cost up by at least 100 million.The jobbing.com arena in Glendale was built at a cost of 280million in 2012 dollars.It is considered to have one of the best interior designs in the NHL but the exterior is plain.Katz or Mandel wanted a world class building without a clue as to what that would do to the costs.
Katz at this point doesn’t think there is enough other revenue to make it work financially .
As the city has already put in almost 100 million for the land and design he figures the city may forge ahead on it’s own and then he can cut a real sweetheart of a deal after it’s built.
That’s our take on this fiasco.
So there’s another possibility. I’m no expert, and the oilogosphere will be jam packed with posts about this today, but this blog is, as they say, nonplussed about the Katz group behaviour.
An interesting overview–and a fine site–is here.