The New York Times has published an article titled “Company’s Arenas Leave Cities With Big Problems” which discusses the problems with the arenas that Global Entertainment built around the country, specifically the Santa Anna Star Center in Rio Rancho, New Mexico.
But trouble started almost from the day the doors of Santa Ana Star Center opened in 2006. Global Entertainment, the company hired to build and manage the arena, failed to book enough events, and the minor league hockey team it recruited folded. Attendance was light because of high ticket prices and the arena’s remote location. Unrealistic sales targets and high turnover among the arena’s staff added to the problems.
The article says the Global Entertainment promised revenue that was incredible even when there wasn’t a recession and that they weren’t able to meet their projections in several other cities. The free market at work, screwing the tax payer. The New York Times also included a very crappy picture of the Santa Ana Star Center.
Field of Schemes suggests the article was written with a pro sports spin because it’s written by New York Times sports writer Ken Belson and that Global Entertainment owns the Central Hockey League.
The article also includes an unrelated but interested history of Rio Rancho.
Controversy is not new in Rio Rancho. The city became nationally known in the 1970s when four executives from the Amrep Corporation were convicted of mail and land fraud for their role selling patches of desert in Rio Rancho to residents of New York and elsewhere. Buyers accused Amrep of using high-pressure techniques to sell lots that, they learned, had little resale value.
For years, Rio Rancho residents, including many from the East Coast who wanted to live more cheaply and quietly, resisted incorporating the town. Rio Rancho was so off the beaten track that the F.B.I. reportedly located some members of its witness protection program there.