Weekly Obsession: My name is bond. Improvement bond.

Sunday, October 23, 2011 at 10:05pm

Twenty-five million dollars isn’t all that much, really.

It’s 4 percent or so of the total cost of the Music City Center.

It’s just two-thirds of what the Titans are guaranteeing Chris Johnson.

Now, after giving their star a payday upgrade — with mixed results — the team wants to improve their building.

Titans Vice President Don MacLachlan unveiled a plan Wednesday for $25 million in bells and whistles to the 13-year-old stadium on the East Bank.

New video screens (now in HD!). Elevators that can speed 11,000 fans per hour from the ground level to the cheap seats. A distributed speaker system that MacLachlan said will be kinder to the Titans east-side neighbors — and will keep the south end zone from being, in MacLachlan’s words, “so doggone loud” while the folks on the north end can hardly hear the down and distance.

There will also be some repurposing of equipment storage areas as fan entertainment zones, a sort-of gridiron brownfield reclamation.

And the best part? Why, it won’t cost the taxpayer a penny!

Unless the taxpayer goes to Titans games or another LP Field event. 

The funds will be generated via the $2 per seat user fee approved by the Metro Council two years ago. Two dollars won’t be enough, long term, though — so the team is asking Metro to tack another buck on to the butt tax, which should increase the annual rake from $1.9 million to around $2.5 million.

That’s enough to pay off those bonds lickety-split.

What’s that? Oh, yes, the bonds. We didn’t mention those?

All the fancy newness will be paid for via Sports Authority-issued, Metro-backed bonds — retired using the seat fee proceeds, but held up by the full faith and credit of Metro government nonetheless.

All the sticky details are still under wraps — the first work session on the proposal is slated for Thursday — so what happens if the Titans can’t make the payment? What happens if attendance slacks and $2.5 million becomes $1.9 million again?

Shh. 

Look at that! The scoreboard’s in HD now!

3 Comments on this post:

By: tomba1 on 10/24/11 at 12:51

Make it a head tax on the new convention center. It'll be sold out more than LP field. However a large butt tax on Chris Johnson might be in order. Given all he's doing for the Titans, he might as well be sitting on his butt somewhere else.

By: serr8d on 10/24/11 at 6:02

It's a shovel-ready project to put hard-working Nashville workers back to work, working, instead of drawing a 'stupid check', a 'here's cash from the Treasury, vote for ME!' check from BamBam. What's not to like?

By: localboy on 10/25/11 at 8:06

"And the best part? Why, it won’t cost the taxpayer a penny!

Unless the taxpayer goes to Titans games or another LP Field event."
Those that use it pay for it - seems fair.