not everyone believes arena deal is dead Name from Beacon's past is back among its pages [Virginian - Pilot]
(Virginian - Pilot Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) While Mayor Will Sessoms and Vice Mayor Louis Jones took the lead in the city's effort to build an arena and land a NBA team, another councilman has emerged as perhaps the project's biggest cheerleader.
Even when the arena was put on ice earlier this month, Councilman Glenn Davis kept smiling and said: "This thing is nowhere near dead."
Davis, 39, who represents the Rose Hall district, is the CEO of On Call Holdings International, a telecom company.
He said his optimism - I'll call him the City Council's Chief Executive Optimist - stems in part from business experiences.
"Every deal a business owner is involved in dies four times before it gets inked," he said. "I've seen numerous deals that ended up being dead happening at the end of the day."
Davis is vocal about his hope that talks between the company that would operate the arena, Comcast-Spectacor, and the team sources have identified as the Sacramento Kings, could still produce a deal.
Even as rumors swirl about the Kings being sold to a group of Seattle investors, Davis is quick to point out that's not a done deal.
"It wouldn't be beyond the realm of possibility for Comcast to come back to us in March," he said. "At the same time there could be other opportunities that come from the national attention we've received and we want to be prepared."
Davis was pushing local legislators to introduce a bill to revive the Hampton Roads regional sports authority and to create legislation to allow tax revenue generated by an arena to be captured and used to pay debt service on the facility. (This may or may not have happened by the time you read this).
This is preparation for any future arena deal, he said.
On a family trip over Christmas, Davis toured the FedExForum, home of the NBA's Memphis Grizzlies, and met with team executives. He was energized to hear the story of how that city got its team.
"I was surprised how much it mirrored what we are facing in Virginia Beach," he said.
Davis was elected to his second term in November, defeating an opponent who called for government austerity. He feels a mandate of sorts to think big.
"I ran on a platform that the city of Virginia Beach in this economic environment needs to be bold."
He touted Town Center as a success story, and said the arena - using the en vogue phrase of the day - would be a "game changer" for the Oceanfront.
"Just like Town Center allowed us to re-brand the Pembroke area and had significant economic impact, the arena would basically be a re-branding our Oceanfront on a national level."
(c) 2013 ProQuest Information and Learning Company; All Rights Reserved.
[ Back To Technology News's Homepage ]