Irving Entertainment Complex Contract Expiring

Current contract between city, developer expires at midnight

The city and the developer of the troubled $250 million entertainment center project in Las Colinas will meet Monday night on the eve of the contract's expiration.

At midnight, the city's contract with the Las Colinas Group expires. The two entities have been working since 2007 on building the entertainment center in Las Colinas.

The developer is asking for a fifth extension, Mayor Beth Van Duyne said.

On Monday, the future site of the Irving entertainment center was used as an overflow parking lot for the Irving Convention Center. After five years of working with the Las Colinas Group in good faith, the city has spent more than $40 million while the plot of land continued to sit empty, Van Duyne said.

Irving resident and business owner Lisette Caraballo said it was frustrating to not see any progress after so many years.

"What do we have? What do we have for the people that work here in Las Colinas? When they leave, these corporations they go somewhere else, and they spend their money somewhere else," she said.

Councilman Dennis Webb said he hoped the city leaders could give the developer another extension.

"We're hoping that we can convince enough council members to at least try this 90-day extension," he said. "Let everybody start talking, because we haven't been talking."

Webb said he is also wary that a lawsuit would be in the city's future if the City Council does not vote to give the developer some extra time.

David Margulies, Las Colinas Group spokesman, said the outcome could become costly if an agreement is not made at Monday's meeting.

"I think it's safe to say that, if there is no extension or some other kind of agreement, that I would agree with the city that there is a potential for litigation," he said.

Van Duyne said she and some of the others on the council have been taking the advice of the city's legal staff, which included recommendations to not engage or negotiate.

The special meeting on Monday begins at 7 p.m. at City Hall.

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