City of Laredo

City Council Meeting


Laredo Public Library Boardroom

1120 E.  Calton Road

Laredo, Texas 78040

May 18, 2000

5:30 p.m.


Work Shop


I.          Call to Order


            With a quorum present Mayor Elizabeth G.  Flores called the meeting to order.


II.        Pledge of Allegiance


            Mayor Elizabeth G.  Flores led in the Pledge of Allegiance.


III.       Roll Call


            Elizabeth G.  Flores,                                         Mayor

            Alfredo Agredano,                                            Councilmember, District I

            Louis H.  Bruni,                                                Councilmember, District II

            John C.  Galo,                                                  Councilmember, District III

            Johnny Amaya,                                                 Councilmember, District IV

            Eliseo Valdez, Jr.,                                             Councilmember, District V

            Joe A.  Guerra,                                                 Councilmember, District VI

            Mario G.  Alvarado,                                         Councilmember, District VII

            Consuelo “Chelo” Montalvo,                            Mayor Pro Tempore, District VIII

            Gustavo Guevara, Jr.,                                       City Secretary

            Larry Dovalina,                                                 Acting City Manager

            Cynthia Collazo,                                               Acting City Manager

            Jaime Flores,                                                    City Attorney


IV.       Proposed Arena Project


A.  Discussion and review of a proposed Letter of Intent to be executed between the City of

      Laredo and Arena Ventures, L. L. C., regarding the development of an arena project in

      the City of Laredo, Texas, with possible action.


       The Partners in Arena Ventures, LLC


        Glenn Hart


            Chairman of Michael Petroleum Corporation.

            Michael Petroleum is the fifth largest tax payer in Webb County.

Original founder and majority owner of the Houston Aeros hockey franchise and Southwest Real Estate Enterprises, the real estate development company of the Houston Aeros.


Second largest owner in Arena Operating Company which is the master leaseholder and operator of the Compaq Center (formerly know as the Summit).


Minority owner in the New Orleans Zephyrs, the Houston Astros AAA affiliate.  In 1997, the team successfully negotiated a new baseball stadium, owned by the Louisiana Stadium and Exposition District and operated by the New Orleans Zephyrs organization. 


         Julian L. “Kiki” DeAyala


            President of Arena Ventures, LLC.


            Former part owner of Cornerstone Securities.


            Former minority owner of the Houston Aeros Hockey Franchise.


President and part owner of Southwest Real Estate Enterprises, the development company of the Houston Aeros.  Mr.  DeALyala was responsible for the development of $13 million worth of special use facility development and consulted on an additional $15 million in commercial development.


          Jack Tompkins


            Currently CEO of exalt, a publicly traded internet company.


            Former CFO of Crescent Real Estate, a publicly traded REIT.


            Former CFO of Enron Corporation.


On Board of Directors of the Star of Hope, Houston’s largest homeless mission.  Mr.  Tompkins also holds various positions with other charitable organization.


          Jim Smith


One of the largest and most respected developers in Houston, owning over 1,000,000 square feet of retail and commercial properties.


Chairman of the Board of Goodwill Industries of Houston.  Mr.  Smith also holds various key positions with several non-profit organizations.




SMG and LMI merged to form the largest public assembly facility management company in the world.


The merger combines SMG’s and LMI’s best management practices to create a company of unmatched depth of operational skill, event booking, development expertise and facility management excellence.


The new company’s unparalleled resources of industry talent and knowledge will enable it to offer its clients enhanced event-booking capabilities, increased purchasing power and the largest support team in the industry.


SMG delivers live entertainment booking and management services for nearly one hundred stadiums, arenas, convention centers and theaters around the globe including facilities in Oslo, Norway and Melbourne, Australia.


Facilities managed in Texas inclued:  Astrodome, Astoarena, Astrohall, Harris County NFL/Rodeo Stadium (under construction), Harris County Exposition Center (under construction), Compaq Center, El Paso Convention Center and El Paso Convention & Visitors Bureau.


Unique Qualifications


Extensive experience in:


Professional Sports Ownership

Houston Aeros

New Orleans Zephyrs


Entertainment Center Management

Compaq Center

New Orleans Zephyrs Stadium


Real Estate Development


Developed in excess of 1.5 million square feet of space.

Developed or involved in $58 million worth of special use facilities.


Proposed Laredo Entertainment Center


Seating Capacity


o       8,000 fixed seating with capacity to increase to 10,000


Building Size


o       approximately 178,000


Construction Cost


o       Approximately $35.5 Million


Construction Schedule


o       24 Months


Facility Uses


The true value of the Laredo Entertainment Center is the diverse mix of events to satisfy all interests.  Designed to accommodate as many uses as possible, the residents of Laredo will now be able to comfortably enjoy events such as:


·        Graduation Ceremonies & Proms

·        Concerts

·        Indoor and Outdoor Festivities

·        Circus & Wrestling

·        Skating & Family Shows

·        Boxing, Soccer, and Basketball

·        Community Events

·        Hockey


The Laredo Entertainment Center Site Location


Location:                                              Jacaman Road and Loop 20

Property:                                              Approximately 25 acres deeded to the city of Laredo

Remaining Acr. Development    55 Acres


           Economic Impact


Direct Economic Impact


Construction Phase




Operation Phase





Total impact


·        The estimated total impact on the upper end, for both the construction and operation phase is $121.1 million.


·        The lower and upper bounds were calculated using the conservative multipliers of 1.8 and 2.4 respectively.


·        Approximately 70 full time jobs created for center operations.


·        The study did not take into account additional economic impact generated from development of the surrounding site including jobs created and additional property tax revenues from development activities.


Entertainment Center Indirect Economic Impact


·        Arena Ventures has the contractual right to develop the surrounding 55 acres over the next 42 months.


·        The project lends itself to further development of the site with a variety of complimentary uses.


·        Arena ventures anticipates the site to be a mixed use development including hotel, specialty retail, restaurants, and other entertainment uses.


·        The development of the Center site will attract new businesses and the investment will create new jobs and increased property tax revenue to the city of Laredo.


·        The ability to predict the amount of investment in the Entertainment Center site is premature at this point, however there have been expression of interest from preliminary sources and negotiations will occur in the near future.


Arena Ventures Investment in Laredo


Arena Ventures has invested to date                                          $250,000

Additional funds through referendum                                         $100,000

Architectural & Engineering cost/pre-dev                                  $125,000

WPHL franchise fee                                                                 $500,000

Start up costs                                                                           $500,000

Land caused to be donated to the city                                    $1,500,000

Contracts to purchase land for commercial dev                 $11,000,000

Real Estate development                                                                       ?



Frequently asked questions


Q:  Who will own the Laredo Entertainment Center?


A:  The City of Laredo will own the Entertainment Center, which will include 20 acres of 

       land for the facility and an additional 4-5 acres for future City expansion needs.




Q:  What activities will be held at the Entertainment Center?


A:  The Entertainment Center will host a wide range of events for the residents of Laredo,

       including but not limited to: 


Graduation Ceremonies                                                Concerts

Rodeo                                                                          Family Shows

Circus                                                                          Boxing

Festivals                                                                       Basketball

Professional hockey                                                      Soccer

Truck Shows


Public Ice Skating

Community Events

Trade Shows


Q:  Will the tickets be affordable for the average family?


A:  Yes! Because of the significantly increased seating capacity of the Laredo

Entertainment Center, in comparison to the current Laredo Civic Center, ticket pricing for events held will be greatly reduced.  With respect to hockey tickets, the WPHL was designed with a family’s budget in mind.  Approximately 25% of the seating will be priced in the $6.00 range or roughly equal to the cost of going to the movies.


Q:  How does the proposed ¼ of a penny sales tax affect the average citizen?


A:  Even if you spend $5,000 a year on sales taxable items, the ¼ of a penny increase will

       only cost you $12.50 per year, or less than it would cost for two movie tickets.


Q:  What role does hockey play in the Entertainment Center?


A:  The Hockey team is important for several reasons:


The team will generate approximately 40 dates and produce approximately $500,000 in revenue annually to the Center, making the project financially viable.


Hockey is the only professional sport that can generate that many dates and has proven to be successful in markets the size of Laredo.


Hockey is fun for the family and has been well received in non-traditional markets like Corpus Christ, Lubbock, El Paso, San Angelo, Odessa and coming soon to Hidalgo.


Summary of Economic Benefits/Job Creation


·        The residents will have the opportunity to enjoy a wide range of events, activities and entertainment options for the whole family.


·        Future expansion of the Center will create new business opportunities.


·        Dollars that are currently leaving the City of Laredo, will remain in the Laredo economy.


·        The Center will attract visitors and generate dollars to the economy.


·        The Center will help promote the City for new business relocations, expansion of existing companies and help attract new talent to the City.


Summary of Economic Benefits/Job Creation


·        Hundreds of construction jobs will be created.

·        Approximately 70 new jobs will be created to operate the Center.


·        Local companies will benefit from the service contracts needed to operate the Center.


·        Arena Ventures has approximately $11 million dollars in real estate commitments.  The proposed mixed-use real estate development will attract new business, create jobs, and generate property tax revenues for the City.


Arena Ventures Activity Report


·        The acquisition of a WPHL franchise.


·        Preliminary architectural schematics/construction budget.


·        The acquisition and development of real estate


·        Laredo donation to the City of Laredo.


·        The creation of a public/private partnership, to build and operate a multi-use, Entertainment Center.


V.        Adjournment                                                                                                   Time:  8:05 p.m.


            Motion to adjourn.


            Moved:  Cm.  Bruni

            Second:  Cm.  Agredano

            For:  8                                                  Against:  0                                            Abstain:  0


I hereby certify that the above minutes contained in pages 01 to 07 are true, complete and correct proceedings of the City Council Workshop held on the 18th day of May, 2000.





                  Gustavo Guevara, Jr.

                       City Secretary