The Shreveport City Council will soon consider a proposal to construct a $30-million sports complex in the downtown area. The goal of the complex, which would be right next to a proposed mixed use development site, is to lure the New Orleans Pelicans G-League team to the arena. Local banker Rick Holland says different entities are now gathering their plans for presentation.
“City Council itself will have a meeting on September 12th and they will vote whether to go forward and authorize these bonds to build this sports complex and I am very optimistic.”
There is also talk of the facility being used as a practice facility for the New Orleans Saints. Holland says the over $100 million mixed development site would be privately funded by Birmingham based Corporate Reality. Holland says this would bring great benefits to Shreveport.
“A corporate entity wants to come in and invest $150 million in your community and number two, when do you ever get a chance to have a relationship with a Tom Benson organization? It’s like a Fortune 500 company telling you they want to be part of your community.”
Some individuals and organizations are not pleased with this proposal, like the local police department. Holland says in 2006, the Saints were in Shreveport for a preseason game and it was great for the economy. He says there will be no additional direct taxes placed on Caddo Parish residents.
“All this money that will be used to help get it going come from a dedicated tax that’s on the riverfront, casinos, the restaurants and the other things that are down there. That will service the debt.”