City takes over financing of Games’ Village

The City of Vancouver will finance the entire $1-billion Olympic Village development after purchasing a $750-million loan agreement from New York-based Fortress Investment Group yesterday morning.

The City of Vancouver will finance the entire $1-billion Olympic Village development after purchasing a $750-million loan agreement from New York-based Fortress Investment Group yesterday morning.

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson said the deal gives the city the best return on its investment and allows it to focus on getting the village ready in time for the Games.

“We have gone from a deal that was clearly not in the interests of taxpayers,” Robertson said, “to an agreement that puts Vancouver’s taxpayers first.”

During a special council meeting yesterday morning, city manager Penny Ballem informed councillors that an hour earlier, the city had transferred $319 million to Fortress to “purchase” the loan.

The amount represents the money that Fortress loaned project developer Millennium, plus a $4-million early repayment fee.

The buyout money is a $240-million “investment” of city money and $90 million of a $400-million
line of credit from the Bank of Montreal.

 
 
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