I say No
I have been a resident of Virginia Beach for 20 years. Overall the trend for the City has been pretty good in my opinion; although there seems to be some bias to many project sponsors that appears to be without regard to infrastructure and resident issues; biased to the City seeing more revenues. Been an experienced investment banker for almost 30 years that has funded numerous projects throughout the US and been involved in overseas projects. Further, have also been a bankruptcy turnaround specialist court appointed by federal judges to unwind failed projects. I say this as a qualifier of expertise behind the opinion. I am quite surprised how little is tasked to project promoters to mitigate burdens on infrastructure, much less certain objections by the tax payers. Notwithstanding very little disclosure on the concrete infrastructure issues (highway, roadway, parking, etc.), I still haven't been able to figure out the financial feasibility of this project and whether we will end up with a white elephant or potentially worse a foreign partner if their is a failure.
The first red flag I see is why a US bank syndication is not interested in this project. This of course begs the question why a Asian financier is so anxious; usually interested in higher profile cities - we're not a Miami; maybe they think we could be an Atlantic City? It is unclear what the terms and conditions are to the financing of the deal, which I believe should be made fully public for comment for a period of not less than 60 days. Simple metrics seem to indicate that this facility will have to generate very significant cash-flow to meet a huge $200 million debt and candidly I do not see it. Areas that have 3 times the population, notwithstanding the transient nature here, have been unable to come to the same conclusions as these folks appear to have.
In closing, I have seen little in details and specificity that area residents concerns can be dealt with without massive condemnation of property, overstretching of already stressed resources, or alternatively imposing on spreading the stress out around the City. We see how well that worked years ago for the July 4th festivity and trucking people in from Pendelton. Secondly, I think the public should see the Financial Feasibility Study given to the lender (and I hope the City Officials) to see what the true assumptions are from a economic stand point. I do not believe they are achievable and ponder, without bias, having a Chinese investor owning major asset in the City of Virginia Beach that controls a property with little accord to certain protections if they are not anticipated upfront. I say this in pragmatic words. Over (40%) of my business dealings today are overseas; much in Asiatic countries. I understand this world. We need to be cautious and there needs to be full transparency in fainest to residents & taxpayers; none of which I have really seen.
K. L. Malmgren