Convention Center Expantion

Wayne County Executive, Robert Ficano, has a plan. It’s no secret that Cobo Center at Washington and Congress needs to have a serious renovation if Detroit is to compete with other cities for the convention business. Bad enough that the big three are in dire straits, much less to loose the International Auto Show to Chicago or Las Vegas because of lack of space.

Ficano is calling for about $968 million for the redo. That figure includes $20 million to buy the center from the city and the counties. I’m all for expanding Cobo Center but let’s get it on, k? Four different plans since 2000? The most rediculous was the Mayor’s call for a completely new structure costing $1.3 billion. Come on, even if the auto companies chipped in a million a piece, that leaves one billion dollars and the city can’t collect on parking tickets. Any suggestions on where the Mayors head is?

Enough screwing around. Get a plan together to expand Cobo Center and get it done. Without a modern, 21st century convention hall, Detroit is going to be left behind in this global business community regardless of any other improvements.

3 Comments so far

  1. Tom (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 8:04 am

    The politics in this are messy. The city is afraid of losing another facility to the county (and thus the evil suburbs). The county wants to force the city to expand cobo but the city doesn’t have the cash. It’s kind of a catch-22 in a way, the city doesn’t want to lose it but they can’t afford to keep it modern.

    Curious, what do other convention halls have that Cobo does not have? What makes a convention hall modern anyway? Isn’t it basically a big warehouse anyway?

  2. Tom (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 8:08 am

    That is, besides another pedestrian bridge?

    This would make the Rencen the pedestrian bridge hub of the world and solidify it’s place as the most confusing building ever constructed.

  3. ZuDfunck (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 11:40 am

    As painful as it would be to loose Cobo Arena, it is the best thing one can do to expand Cobo! ANd if it is true it will be a private venture, let’s do it!

    But please let us who care to, tour and keep some piece of the arena before it is flattened!

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