Friday, June 23, 2006

Or this space will represent the Lerner groups'
"backup" plan for all above-ground parking

From Jacqueline Dupree:
Lerners Still Want Aboveground Parking as Plan B
(6/22/06) The Post's Day 2 story on the stadium parking garages, "City Urged to Support 2 Proposals," says that team owner Ted Lerner "wants city officials to adopt his proposal for aboveground-only parking as a backup if the mayor's plan for parking aboveground and below falls through. [...] The Lerner group stressed that it will agree [to the city's plan for both underground and aboveground parking with surrounding development] but asks that the city consider the group's plan for aboveground parking with no other development as a Plan B." As for logistics: "The city's chief financial officer, Natwar M. Gandhi, is analyzing whether he can certify the money is available for the city's parking plan. D.C. Council member Sharon Ambrose (D-Ward 6) has scheduled a hearing on the stadium July 6. And the council will vote July 11 on a resolution to transfer development rights on the stadium site near South Capitol Street and the Navy Yard in Southeast Washington to private developers." In a classic chicken-and-egg scenario, CFO Gandhi wants a letter from Herb Miller's financial backers before he certifies the plan, but the backers want to see that the plan is supported by the Zoning Commission at the June 26 hearing before proceeding. The WashTimes story from today has similar comments, saying that approval of the plan by the Council is likely as long as Miller can show "how the project can be paid for without threatening the city's $611 million spending cap for the stadium." This story says that approval of the aboveground structures by the Zoning Commission is less certain.
Watch this June 26 meeting. The longer this decision is delayed, the greater the liklihood that the Lerner's will argue for this "plan B".

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