Jan 12, 2023 - News

Previous public subsidies for Little Caesars Arena top $400 million

Little Caesars Arena pictured to the right of Woodward Avenue. Photo: Samuel Robinson/Axios

Little Caesars Arena to the right of Woodward Avenue. Photo: Samuel Robinson/Axios

As the conversation around the District Detroit tax incentives and financing heats up, we're diving into the Ilitches' Little Caesars Arena, which has already received at least $403 million in public subsidy commitments from the Downtown Development Authority.

Why it matters: With so many residents in need, public funding for downtown developments is often viewed with skepticism — if not outright opposition.

  • A new development proposal for the arena district comes with a demand for nearly $800 million in tax incentives.
  • The DDA collects tax dollars used to promote downtown's growth.

💰 The previously approved subsidies related to LCA include:

$287 million: Government bonds to fund a portion of the arena's $863 million construction and the Pistons' move to LCA.

$74 million: This payment was triggered in 2018 when the Ilitches' development company, Olympia, met its commitment for $200 million worth of additional development in the arena district.

  • The payments are scheduled over time, with over $70 million to be paid after the arena bonds are paid off in 2048.

$34.7 million: A DDA contribution under the original public financing plans.

$7.3 million: The DDA's share of an LCA repair fund, which started at $500,000 a year and escalates 4% annually.

  • The $14.6 million cost through 2051 is split with Olympia.
Little Caesars Arena public funding
Data: Detroit Economic Growth Corporation; Chart: Axios Visuals
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