A funny thing happened on the Astrodome Redevelopment Corp.‘s way to, uh . . . redevelop the Astrodome: They forgot to get buy-in on their kitchen-sink proposal from a few important parties:
The $450 million plan to reinvent the Reliant Astrodome as an upscale convention hotel may have hit a wall Tuesday when the Texans and Houston rodeo officials came out against it.
The Texans and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo’s contracts may give them veto power over new development at Reliant Park. Also, a letter of intent signed by the county and Astrodome Redevelopment Corp. requires the company to get the Texans and the rodeo to sign off on the project.
Oops! Hey, it might have been a good idea to ask these folks what they would approve of—before spending four years scheming in their secret design bunker. Just a suggestion . . .
“Not until we saw their plans recently did we realize that this project has the ability to cannibalize our operations,” said Leroy Shafer, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo’s chief operating officer. “Every dollar spent that is spent there is one that might not be spent at the rodeo.”
Jamey Rootes, president of the Houston Texans, said the team was worried that the hotel would hamper the flow of fans in and out of Reliant Park on the team’s 10 game days.
The nerve! The response from Scott Hanson, president of the Astrodome Redevelopment Corp.:
Frankly, we are quite shocked by the Rodeo’s position. We have been working with the Rodeo organization for quite some time and were hopeful that our proposed redevelopment would only enhance their month-long event.
Apparently, “working with” does not include “sharing details of the proposal before it is complete.”
At last, the beauty of the Sports and Convention Corporation’s original plot from a few years ago is revealed: give exclusive rights to flail about in secret in search of a new use for the Dome to a company that, um . . . is really good at being secretive and flailing.
Coming next from those brilliant Dome masters: If these jokers can’t figure out what to do with that thing, maybe no jokers can!
Astrodome photo: Flickr user here_we_are