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Construction of arena moves step closer
Construction of arena moves step closer
Council asks state for construction money

Updated: Tuesday, 27 Nov 2012, 11:23 PM EST
Published : Tuesday, 27 Nov 2012, 6:14 PM EST

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) -  

A plan to build a $350 million arena on the Virginia Beach Oceanfront housing an NBA team as its anchor tenant moved ahead Tuesday evening.

WAVY.com has learned Virginia Beach Mayor Will Sessoms formally asked Beach City Council ask for permission to move forward a request for $150 million to help with construction costs and moving expenses for an unnamed team.

As WAVY Sports Director Bruce Rader reported earlier this month, George Maloof Jr., one of the owners of the NBA’s Sacramento Kings met in Richmond with Gov. Bob McDonnell and other state officials to talk about moving his team to Virginia Beach if an arena was built there.

Since that meeting, Peter Luukko, the president of Comcast-Spectacor, has been negotiating a deal with Beach officials, and presumably the Kings, to bring the three groups together.

The city would own the building, Comcast-Spectacor in partnership with concert industry giant Live Nation would manage and book the arena and the Kings would be the main tenant .

Sources told Rader  Luukko will ask the general assembly to approve funding amounting to $150 million.

$70 million of the requested state funds would go toward construction costs and $80 million will go to the team for moving expenses. 

That would include an estimated $30 million relocation fee the Kings would have to pay the other NBA owners and for potential loss of income the Kings would face by having to play two years at ODU's Ted Constant Convocation Center while the arena is being built.

One consultant report, given to state officials, concludes an arena with an NBA team in Virginia Beach could generate as much as $182 million in visitor spending each year, with the state alone taking in almost $11 million a year in tax dollars.

If given the nod by council, the city will formally pass this request to state officials.

Luukko is expected to come before city council next week to make Comcast-Spectacor’s formal proposal.

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