(This is WAAAY over my head, but I provide it as a public service to the three of you who do understand it.) Fitch has rated the bonds
that will be sold next week to finance the new baseball stadium
: "Fitch has assigned ratings to the following series of ballpark revenue bonds to be issued by the District of Columbia: $81.34 million taxable series 2006A-1 'BBB'; $108.88 million taxable series 2006A-2 'BBB'; $320.39 million tax-exempt series 2006B-1 'BBB+'; $25 million tax-exempt series 2006B-2 (auction rate securities) 'BBB+'. The bonds are scheduled to be sold the week of May 2
. The series 2006A-1 bonds will be a limited offering with UBS Investment Bank as placement agent. The series 2006A-2 and 2006B bonds will be sold through negotiation with a syndicate led by UBS Investment Bank. The Rating Outlook on all four series is Stable. Proceeds will be used for construction of a new baseball stadium along the Anacostia River."
Here's an AP story
about this, indicating that these are low ratings, because "a utilities tax, a stadium concessions tax and rent from the Washington Nationals could fluctuate, making them a less stable way to pay back investors." And the bonds will be sold May 3.
Demolition Started at Stadium Site
Apr 25, 2006 10:32 AM
Thanks to a tip from a correspondent, I can confirm that there is now demolition underway at the ballpark
site, at its southernmost corner (South Capitol and P and Potomac). They are also "demolishing" (i.e., digging up) the triangle of empty land at 1st, P, and Potomac known as Reservation 247. Plus, now that the asphalt plant at Half and O has been dismantled
, they're also digging up and clearing that lot as well. And they are in the process of putting up more fencing around the perimeter of the site--looks like they will have O Street at South Capitol fenced off by the end of the day. So while there hasn't been any sort of official groundbreaking--and I haven't heard whether there will be or not--clearly they are now moving forward.