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Posts tagged: events center

NIC Shooting At Wrong Target

Backed by a majority of citizens serving on an ad-hoc committee, North Idaho College is prepared to ask its board of trustees to hire a consultant who could help chart a course for a proposed event center. Take a deep breath and look again at that long, awkward, nebulous sentence. It's an accurate reflection of the long, awkward, nebulous process that has brought us to this point in debating the merits and means of building a $15 million to $20 million event center in Coeur d'Alene. Problem is, we're debating the merits and means of the wrong thing. While an event center is a captivating topic, it isn't North Idaho College's highest capital priority/Coeur d'Alene Press Editorial Board. More here.

Question: Does the event center have too much opposition to move ahead?

Press: Deep Six Event Center

If Coeur d'Alene is ever going to have an event center, the time isn't now and Riverstone certainly isn't the place. This week, the city's urban renewal agency, Lake City Development Corp., agreed to fund $10 million toward construction of a multi-purpose event center at Riverstone if North Idaho College, the primary beneficiary of the center, can raise an additional $5 million for the project. We're stunned that NIC would step so far outside its educational mission as a community college - and beyond the 17-acre corridor it purchased five years ago at a cost of $10 million - to prioritize this ill-conceived project and push it into hyperdrive. And we're disappointed that LCDC, perhaps in political panic mode, would even consider committing almost every future penny it could generate in the River District to such a risky venture/Coeur d'Alene Press Editorial Board. More here.

Question: Are you surprised that the Coeur d'Alene Press is so opposed to North Idaho College involvement in the proposed events center?

LCDC OKs $10M For Events Center

The LCDC board of directors on Wednesday voted unanimously to grant preliminary/conditional approval of North Idaho College’s request for $10 million in funding for and Event Center at Riverstone. Final approval is contingent on several factors, a formal funding request from the college. NIC president Joe Dunlap told the LCDC board a formal request will be made by the end of the year. A key factor in approval of the funding is the college’s commitment to raise $5 million for the project//Keith Erickson, LCDC. More here.

Question: Anyone out there besides Councilman Dan Gookin and mayor candidate Mary Souza have problems with LCDC kicking in $10M for a much-wanted/needed events center?

LCDC: $10M For Center Possible

Item: LCDC: $10 million is possible: Agency could secure funds to help build NIC event center/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d'Alene Press

More Info: Lake City Development Corp. has $10 million to help build an event center in Riverstone. Before the urban renewal agency decides whether it wants to pay for the bulk of the project North Idaho College is pitching, more market, feasibility and financing numbers have to be studied thoroughly. Until then, LCDC is interested in helping land the multi-use sports complex near the intersection of Northwest Boulevard and Interstate 90, it said Wednesday, and it could secure the funds to do it.

Question: Both NIC Trustee Ron Nilson and Councilman Dan Gookin support construction of an event center at Riverstone. However, Gookin said during a joint meeting of the council and LCDC board that he didn't support using urban renewal money to build the center. Should he (if it's the only way the center can be built)?

My 2 Cents: Gookin, Nilson Lead Way

Gotta give a H/T to Councilman Dan Gookin and NIC Trustee Ron Nilson for their enthusiastic reaction to a possible events center being built at Riverstone. During a joint meeting of the City Council and NIC trustee board, Gookin and Nilson said — on “Woody TV” Channel 19 — that an events center would benefit the community as well as the college. Also, both said that the proposed events center should be built large enough to handle events like state high school football championships that are now being lost to Moscow and Pocatello, which have domed stadiums. Gookin was optimistic that voters would pass a bond (that could be floated after creation of a Recreation District) for an events center if they were informed properly re: the benefits. Nilson, who was instrumental in the passage of the bonds to build KTEC in Rathdrum, agreed. However, both balked when the specter of the Lake City Development Corp. was raised to provide some funding. All at the meeting agreed that NIC athletic/events facilities are outdated. Christiansen Gym was built in 1944. A good example of the restrictions caused by poor facilities is the 2014 national NJCAA wrestling tournament that NIC will host — in Spokane/DFO.

Question: I support the idea of a $12M-$15M events center that would attract events here. Also, I think the support of Gookin and Nilson is important for this idea to find traction. What do you think?

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About this blog

D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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