Detroit City Council kills plan to expand NAIAS home
The part of the plan that isn't sitting well with Detroit officials is a stipulation that hands control of the aging facility to a regional authority controlled by the tri-county area and representatives from the city and state. The city would receive $20 million dollars in funds to cede power of Cobo, but the council feels they aren't getting fair value for the venue. The city, which has been knee-deep in debt for years, operates Cobo at an annual loss of between $13 and $15 million. Due to disrepair, analysts say the building is worth a negative $284 million dollars.
We love the Detroit show, but the fact is that Cobo is a bit of a dump. The escalators don't always work, the cars are crammed into the limited floor space, and last year a fork lift collapsed into the Cobo floor. Automakers have been making their concerns known, with several pulling out of Detroit this year and a few more revealing no new products. NAIAS organizers say that Cobo must be repaired in 2010 or the city could lose its International designation. Exactly what the struggling city and region don't need right now.
[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req.]
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