Last Modified: Friday, June 22, 2012 10:48 AM
Officials with Mardi Gras Boardwalk will start working today on getting specific plans drawn and financing obtained in order to construct their proposed $46 million entertainment complex along Lake Charles.
The Lake Charles City Council voted 7-0 on Wednesday to let the development group buy the nine lakefront acres Pinnacle Entertainment donated to the city in 2011.
Mardi Gras Boardwalk will have eight months to provide the city with construction plans, which must be approved by the City Council, and 15 months to pay the $4.4 million sale price of the property.
Both the developers and city officials agree that paying for the land now would not be smart — such a move would deny the city any oversight of the project.
Mardi Gras Boardwalk spokesman Lamar Berry said the group will provide the city with more than conceptual plans within eight months. The group agreed to pay $50,000 for an extension if their plans are not finished by that time.
“Now we are going to start talking to folks we’ve had feelers with,” Berry said in regards to potential retail and residential clients.
He stressed the project should be a success considering its location — near Interstate 10 and in proximity to existing gambling operations.
Prior to the vote, some City Council members expressed concern about the land being taken off the market for at least 15 months.
Councilman Stuart Weatherford said, in response, that no other group has presented a proposal to develop the land.
“We’re going to have good answers about the project within eight months,” he said.
Councilman Rodney Geyen did ask the developers to pay up-front money to the city as a guarantee that the project will become a reality.
“But, I am very excited about this program,” he said.
Posted By: Duane Brassette On: 6/20/2012
Title: Great lively and intelligent discussion
If the City is going to reap the benefits of this property, someone has to take a risk. Mardi Gras Boardwalk has already invested a lot of time and money. They obviously intend to put much more time and money into the project to learn whether the project is indeed viable. I think the final agreement as amended is fair to all parties.
I do hope the Mardi Gras spokesman, Lamar Berry learns the correct pronounciation of Amphitheater instead of "Amplitheater" before he begins selling this project to financiers and other participants. Otherwise, I believe Mr. Berry has a keen understanding of how this development can get rolling.
Inasmuch as came to the City as manna from heaven and no one else has stepped up to the plate, the City has nothing to lose by the 7-0 for vote.
That said, NOTHING would surprise me as we enjoy our front row seat watching the history of Lake Charles occur before our very eyes.
Posted By: KIMI On: 6/20/2012
Title: IT'S ABOUT TIME!!!
I HOPE IT IS WELL PLANED OUT.PEOPLE, DON'T FORGET ABOUT OUR CULTURE HERE IN LOUISIANA,EVERYONE I KNOW THAT LIVES OUT OF OUR STATE, LOVES IT HERE,AND SAYS THEY CAN'T WAIT TO COME BACK!WE NEED SHOPS THAT WILL SELL OUR PRODUCTS THAT OR MADE HERE,OUR FOOD AND OUR MUSIC!EVEN AN OLD FASHION CANDY STORE WOULD BE NICE.SOMETHING A LONG THE LINES OF SAVANNA'S BROAD WALK! I LOVE IT THERE. SO CAN'T WAIT TO SEE SOME ACTION!!!