Tony: Kansas City’s Downtown Renaissance Might Not Age Gracefully

There’s a lot to be said for longevity, but it’s definitely never pretty. There have been a great many people thinking about the Sprint Center after the recent propaganda put forth regarding some accounting tricks that produced an “operating profit.”

The Pitch even tried to do some financial reporting today and scribbled down some numbers related to the place but came to no real conclusion about Sprint Center finances.

Make no mistake, The Sprint Center is costing Kansas City big money.

I could dig up some financial data or even grab a City Hall bureaucrat who might give a somewhat misleading quote . . . But anybody who has had to deal with accountants understands that whenever they use an adjective in front of the word profit, they’re really talking about a loss. Even worse, whenever we talk about how much the Sprint Center is costing Kansas City there’s some serious pushback from the political and economic interests that helped to build the glass bowl in the middle of downtown in the first place. And because AEG is at the center of so much worthless conspiracy talk related to the death of Michael Jackson these aren’t necessarily people that I want to fight.

The P&L District part of the Downtown Renaissance is far easier to understand. They’re definitely working to drive Kansas City broke. This place cost Kansas City more than $12 million last year, and it was packed almost every night. Laymen may not understand the economics of this downtown cash pary so I’ll make it simple: The Kansas City took out a loan to help build a place akin to the Taj Mahal. And even if it was packed every night of the week (It’s not) they still wouldn’t be able to pay the huge bills without a GIGANTIC subsidy from the taxpayers. But that’s not the worst part . . . Let’s not forget that club folks are fickle. Sure, KC can pay for a Downtown party during an economic downturn but local cheerleaders think that the end to The Great Recession will bring more life to downtown. But they aren’t even considering that there will be more competition from the suburbs if/when things get better. That’s the funny way capitalism works; more money doesn’t always make things better for government run industries, which basically defines the operation at both The Sprint Center and The P&L District.

So, as time goes by and whether or not the economy gets better, Kansas City is faced with even more of a financial burden in the form of two run down party offerings. Very much like the saggy “fun bags” of a former party chick like Pamela Anderson, which are not without appeal but no longer hold the promise of a new day.

Tony Botello

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4 Responses to Tony: Kansas City’s Downtown Renaissance Might Not Age Gracefully

  1. Anonymous says:

    fact checker
    What is this post about? I ran away to another site after Pam’s photo popped up on my computer screen. Ya gotta warn people about that Tony.

  2. Anonymous says:

    The Sprint Center won’t get an anchor tenant but it will keep attracting top talent with AEG on their side. But that might not be forever. Anyone ever think about that?

  3. Anonymous says:

    The $1.8 mil payment to the city is REALLY to make up for some of the losses at Kemper and a lack of an anchor tenant at SC. Anything Tim Leiweke says about SC or AEG has as much credibility as John Edwards talking abour marital fidelity.

  4. Anonymous says:

    You get ’em, Tony. Screw those guys trying to use facts and numbers in their reporting! Gimme some good, old fashioned speculation anytime!

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