Monday, January 14, 2008

Cobo to expand?

There are plans bouncing around to expand Cobo Center, Detroit's downtown convention center. For more, see Crain's Detroit, the Free Press, or the Detroit News (in that order).

The strangest twist is a proposal to designate the convention center a "tax-free zone" in order to attract more business. That sounds like bad precedent to me. Before long all convention centers will be tax-free in order to compete.

Also odd: a plan to directly connect Cobo to the Renaissance Center with a $25-million covered walkway. Where will it go -- meandering through Hart Plaza? And who needs it? Visitors shouldn't be shielded from ever seeing the city itself.

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