The fate of a new downtown arena in Kansas City is now up to the voters. Mayor Kay Barnes unveiled a proposal for an 18,000-20,000-seat arena on Wednesday. The cost is expected to reach $225-250-million and about half of that will be absorbed by the private sector. The biggest chunk would come from Anschutz Entertainment Group, which will pitch in $50-million. AEG has financial investments in a number of professional sports teams and will try to use its contacts in the NBA and NHL to bring a pro basketball or hockey team back to Kansas City. Sprint, which will have the naming rights and the National Association of Basketball Coaches, which will headquarter its organization there will cover the rest of the private sector funding. The other half of the bill will have to come from user taxes–like taxes added to hotel and car rental bills— which will be voted on in August. If everything goes as planned, the arena will be finished in 2007.
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