I am little surprised that I hadn't seen this posted on here already. So I guess the responsibility falls to me to report what I know.
Mayor Jim Gray is holding a press conference today at 1:00 p.m. in the Cox Street parking lot behind Rupp Arena to announce...... well nobody really knows. There is a lot of speculation that there will be an announcement about a new arena being built or major renovations to Rupp.
I have placed a few phone calls to friends of mine that usually have the scuttlebutt on City Hall and I have heard from each of them that it is just a press conference to confirm the creation of the Task Force Mayor Gray campaigned on to discuss the possibility of a new arena.
Here is the thing. If this is true, then it would be extremely anti-climatic and an uncharacteristic misstep for the Gray administration. There is a lot of excitement in Lexington today because of the Cat's win last night. You will have a lot of disappointed people if the Mayor gets on the microphone to just announce that we are going to talk about a new arena. Yawn.
I did have one friend that speculated with me that it is possible, not likely but possible, that a deal has already been reached and following the excitement of last night, they have moved the time table up for an announcement.
So that is what I know. Not much, but wanted to share what I could. I am hoping that Gray continues to be Super Mayor and surprise everyone by digging the knife a little deeper into Louisville by announcing that the best arena in the Commonwealth will soon be in Lexington. Of course reality will probably be a little more prosaic and we will just learn that the discussion we all knew was going to happen, was in fact actually happening.
Props to Joe Sonka of Barefoot and Progressive for the information.
A committee is established to study possible new arena. Privately funded. The Chairman will be Brent Rice (a lawyer that I personally know. His area of expertise is Real Estate, Public Utilities and Government Services. His is a good fit). The report is due early next year.
Here is a map of possible locations.