Update 5:30 PM – Looks like this turned into a nice pre-election announcement for Mayor Quan.
Today’s the “big” deadline day for Coliseum City. Or maybe not. Consider the following closed session agenda item, to be taken up this afternoon:
b) Property: Coliseum City properties (various properties bounded by San Leandro Street, 66th Avenue, Edgewater and Helgenberger)
City Negotiators: Fred Blackwell, Gregory Hunter, Larry Gallegos, Daniel Rossi
Negotiating Parties: Bay Investment Group, JRDV Architects Inc., HKS Architects, Inc.
Under Negotiation: Price and terms for disposition of the property
Not much to go on, is there? We know that the deadline is there thanks to previous documents about Coliseum City which specified 10/21:
ENA Timeframe: The Negotiation Period under the ENA is hereby extended to run until October 21, 2014, and may only be extended an additional six months with administrative approval.
October 21 also marks the 360-day point of consideration of the project, during which BayIG was supposed to provide a set of deliverables. A quick recap of some of the major deal points:
- Tenant sign-on from one, two, or three current sports franchise tenants (Raiders, A’s, Warriors) – None so far
- Market Data Analysis – The lengthier second part was supposed to have been released by now, has not been made publicly available
- Infrastructure Study – Completed
- Investor Business Case – Reportedly late, not publicly released
Last week there was news that a new, previously unknown investor may come in to save the project. Word was that it would be Perry Capital – a hedge fund with two recent executives who have a minority share of the Raiders – they and the City are going to great pains to keep their involvement under wraps until/unless the ENA is extended. Now Matier and Ross report something different:
Council members privately told us they were encouraged by the team’s 11th-hour addition of new deep-pocket investors being represented by San Diego asset manager adviser Floyd Kephart, chairman of the board of Renaissance Cos. Kephart is expected to take the lead role in the newly reconstituted group, New City Development LLC.
So goodbye BayIG, hello New City Development LLC? Okay.
Also last week, we saw a new website promoting the project, Coliseum City Now. I looked into it and found out that the domain was only acquired on September 26. A companion Facebook page started up during the summer. Assuming that both are under the purview of BayIG/JRDV, the timing seems a little suspect. Coliseum City never bothered to have an website outside of the City’s project page for a year. Why have one now? There’s also a Twitter feed, which has never made a post and has less than 20 followers. Chances of a post coming after 5 PM today? Excellent.
In anticipation of the extension, some unnamed City officials reached out to Raiders fans to make a show of support at the open session at 5, during which the decision is expected to be announced. Keep in mind that it’s basically up to the City Administrator, not the City Council. Also understand that not extending the deadline would effectively kill the project, giving Mark Davis every excuse to go to Los Angeles. What other choice does Oakland have?
If the City announces the ENA extension and the new investor, the mountain to climb for them will be steeper that the Mt. Davis upper deck. They’ll need to wrap up the basic terms of the deal, have the Raiders sign on before they decide to move, and start work with the JPA and Alameda County to put together the DDA (Disposition and Development Agreement), which would allow the project to move forward in earnest, in whatever form it takes. In reality, Coliseum City has 4 months to work out the details, not 6.
On a related note, the comments period for the Draft EIR expired on Friday, October 17. The City will take all the comments and get questions answered from stakeholders and other groups that need to provide answers (Caltrans, PG&E, and the PUC for starters). The EIR runs on a separate track from the business side of the deal, though both need to be resolved/approved before any dirt can be turned.
As for the news impact on the A’s – as I’ve said for some time, the funding gap ($600 million) makes the inclusion of a ballpark extraordinarily difficult to pull off in a way that would satisfy both the baseball team, the public sector, and the private investors who are looking for a healthy return. Moving to more far-off forms of financing makes the likelihood of a ballpark even less.
I’ll be checking into the live stream of the open session while watching the World Series. The mix of tweets promises to be entertaining and at times quite confusing.