Detroit may not have enough money to pay its debts, or the full pension benefits of retired workers, but apparently the beleaguered city has the means to build a new stadium for its National Hockey League Team.
Michigan’s legislature cleared plans for a $400 million publicly-funded arena for the Detroit Red Wings last year. The plan is backed by the city’s emergency manager Kevin Orr and the state Governor Rick Synder, CNN notes.
Critics contend that the project won’t generate enough economic return to justify the cost, while proponents claim it will bring new investments and businesses to the struggling city.
Detroit’s economic condition is so bad that 40% of its street lights have been cut off to reduce costs. Police take an average of an to respond to distress calls. The city’s population has fallen from more than 1.8 million four decades ago to just 700,000 today. Large areas of Detroit are abandoned and the city plans to bulldoze entire neighborhoods.
Earlier this month, the city filed for bankruptcy protection, listing debts of $18.5 billion and little revenue to pay them.