Birchmere / Fillmore Update: Dueling over Dollars

Montgomery County executive Ike Leggett has a tentative agreement with Live Nation to bring a different concert hall to the Silver Spring location. That concert hall could carry the name of the legendary Fillmore arenas. Construction costs for the project are estimated at about $10 million, of which the company would pay a whopping 20%. The other $8 million would come from the county and other state taxpayers. Pretty cushy deal for Live Nation — described as “the world’s largest producer of live music” — wouldn’t you say?

Meanwhile, once the deal to bring the Birchmere to downtown Silver Spring collapsed, the University of Maryland leapt in to to the fray to bring the Birchmere to College Park. That deal was led by the University’s Vice President of Adminstrative Affairs, one Douglas Duncan. That deal also depends on getting state funding. Duncan is hoping to get the $2 million that the state had already set aside to subsidize the Birchmere in Silver Spring.

Now the current county exec and the former county exec are scrapping over that state money. Of course, there is one way to make everybody happy — just have the state subsidize both businesses! Or, as Leggett spokesman Patrick Lacefield put it, “the more music and music venues, the better.”

Or, to rephrase that realistically, “the more corporate welfare, the better.”

And now, a short blogging break until next week.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Budget and Taxes, Edifice Complex

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