35 years ago, taxpayers paid $55.7 million to build the Pontiac Silverdome, former home of the Detroit Lions. The city of Pontiac has been itching to be free of the stadium’s $1.5 million umaintenence bill, so it sold the property at auction. For $583,000.
The winning bidder is an unknown Canadian company that apparently wants to bring a soccer team to the Detroit area.
From the Detroit News:
“We had hoped it would have brought more, but now the city can be freed of its upkeep and get it back on the tax rolls,” Leeb said. Pontiac Mayor Clarence Phillips said he was “disappointed” but knew the city had to shed the costly structure. Councilman Everett Seay said he expects someone — possibly a prospective buyer turned down in recent years — to file a lawsuit to block the sale.
“The citizens of Pontiac deserve better,” Seay said. “This is pennies on the dollar (of what it cost). It goes to show how bad times are … Worse, we don’t even know who bought it.”
The company, which Leeb described only as a Toronto-based group of real estate investors and a “family-run business,” was one of four bidders considered during an auction at the Marriott Hotel. Others bidders were not identified and most left without talking to reporters.
It’s too bad nobody told us they were accepting bids. Then again, Consumerist doesn’t really believe in dome blogging.