Is the $5 Billion Development Planned for the Fairgrounds Real?
Several huge development projects have set their sights on Shreveport in the last year, but so far none have showed any promise of moving past the idea stage. Yesterday, KTBS reported that the biggest redevelopment concept yet has been proposed by a company called Ahart Solutions International (ASI). This multi-national healthcare, energy, construction, and security conglomerate reportedly wants to pour $5 billion in to the Louisiana State Fairgrounds Complex.
According to the report, this gigantic redevelopment would include "Renovation of Hirsch Coliseum, an indoor tennis complex, high-rise hotel, low-rise residential, restaurants, retail stores, other entertainment venues, grocery, parking structures, a police substation, and $20 million for programs chosen by the mayor." ASI also claimed that it would bring international flights to Shreveport, and an "85-thousand seat covered arena to replace Independence Stadium." ASI representatives say they want a 99-year lease of the Shreveport Fairgrounds in return.
The company has already shown what seems like the truth of their intentions by breaking ground on a massive upgrade to the airport in Opelousas. The proposed investment there tops $10 billion. The plan there is to transform the area into a multi-modal transportation hub that would include over 100,000 jobs.
No information on how these proposals will be financed was disclosed.