pop culture, pittsburgh, and potpouri

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Casi-NO news...

I haven't done a post in a while about the ongoing Soap Opera that graces the North Shore of Pittsburgh. After the whole ownership thing and the bail out, I kind of lost interest. You know when things start getting better rather than worse you lose the story. I checked the Post Gazette today for my daily North Shore Casino and here's the scoop. Bankruptcy. Neil Bluhm (pictured above) is running around saying that if the Gaming Control Board doesn't approve his proposed takeover of control of the CasiNO from Barden, that the whole thing will go Bankrupt fulfilling my prediction last May about what will happen to the Casino. The gaming board will consider the proposed transfer tomorrow. If it is approved, Mr. Bluhm said Pittsburgh Gaming will close on the financing for the $800 million project Friday and immediately pay casino contractors. Mr. Barden failed to make a $10 million payment due to contractors for work performed in April when he was unable to secure permanent financing. That led him to cut a deal with Mr. Bluhm and his group to take over the project. Mr. Barden would retain a 20 percent interest. So it looks like there is still a very interesting story here. Apparently, Mr. Bluhm said bankruptcy is a near certainty because Mr. Barden is in default of a $200 million bridge loan he used to start construction and is unable to obtain permanent financing for the casino. If Mr. Barden himself doesn't take the project into bankruptcy, the bridge loan lender, Credit Suisse, will. Awesome!!!! Open For business!~!! A lot is riding on this because the Penguins break ground on their new arena within the week and were promised 7 million a year to help finance its cost from the Casino that is now sitting unfinished on the North Shore. Uh Oh. I just don't understand how this could happen. I really think that any Yinzer from Polish Hill could have picked a better person to build a Casino than Barden. How are Pittsburgh/ Pennsylvania politicians so incompetent? Lets just get this thing finished for Christ sake. Actually if we can get contractors back on the job that would be a good thing at this point.

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