Detroit Downtown Development Authority Approves Bond Finance Plan for Downtown Events Center

Detroit, Mich., 9/16/14 -- The Detroit Downtown Development Authority (DDA) has approved the financial plan for building the new event center Downtown in partnership with the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) and Olympia Development of Michigan (ODM).
According to the plan, MSF will issue two series of 30-year bonds that total $450 million. The interest on the $250 million in Series A Bonds will be tax-exempt because a special DDA Tax Increment Tax capture of property taxes within the district will be used to retire them. The interest on the $200 million in Series B Bonds will be taxable because they will be paid off by an ODM affiliate under terms of the Concession and Management Agreement (CMA) it has with the DDA. Issuing two series of bonds for one project recognizes the difference in public and private contributions that will retire them.
The DDA approved a preliminary agreement 15 months ago for developing the new sports and entertainment district around a new multi-purpose center that will be home to the Detroit Red Wings and programmed with other events throughout the year. The 785,000 sq. ft. center will seat 20,000 people. 
Besides the arena, which will be home for the Detroit Red Wings, ODM is committed to investing, or causing to invest an additional $200 million in new residential, retail and office development in a 45-block area that generally reaches from Grand Circus Park to Charlotte St. between Woodward Ave. and Grand River Ave. Overall, at least 56 percent of the total district development costs will be privately funded.
“With this decision, it won't be long before we see shovels in the ground and a transformation happening before our eyes,” said Brian Holdwick, Executive Vice President for Business Development at Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, which negotiated the deal for the DDA. “The district is going to be an exciting place to be, as well as a great job creator for Detroiters and Detroit-based businesses."
"Today’s meeting was an important next step in this public-private partnership that will create a world-class sports and entertainment district in Detroit,” said Christopher Ilitch, President and CEO of Ilitch Holdings. “This initiative will produce 8,300 construction and construction-related jobs, and deliver $1.8 billion in economic impact to our city, region and state. We appreciate the ongoing efforts of the DDA, MEDC and others toward the transformation of this key area in downtown Detroit.”
Additional Resources for Reporters and Editors
Use this link to to download documents related to the project.
Detroit Downtown Development Authority (DDA). The DDA supports private investments and business growth within Detroit's central business district with loans, sponsorships and grants, capital improvements to public infrastructure and other programs that increase economic activity. Funding for DDA programs comes from a number of sources including grants, contracts, interest on loans and captured tax increments - increases in property taxes that result from new investments - on approved developments. Property owners within the DDA district pay a 1 mill property tax to fund the basic operation of the DDA.The DDA has regularly scheduled meetings on the second and fourth Thursday of each month. It may also hold special meetings as needed. All meetings are announced by a posting outside the offices of DEGC, Guardian Building, 500 Griswold, Suite 2200, Detroit and at the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center. Check the calendar at for updates.
Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC). DEGC is a non-profit organization that serves as the lead implementing agency for business retention, attraction and economic development initiatives in the city of Detroit. DEGC is led by a 60-member board comprised of business, civic, labor and community leaders. Its 40 professionals provide staff services for key public authorities that offer tax credits and other forms of financing for projects that bring new jobs or economic activity to the city. Among them: the Downtown Development Authority (DDA), Detroit Brownfield Redevelopment Authority (DBRA), Economic Development Corporation (EDC), Neighborhood Development Corporation (NDC), Local Development Finance Authority (LDFA), and Tax Increment Finance Authority (TIFA). DEGC also provides planning, project management and other services under contract to the City of Detroit.
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Bob Rossbach