Hall of Fame Resort taps energy-efficiency funding to free capital for building projects

Hall of Fame Resort & Entertainment Co. recently closed on an $8.3 million energy improvement assessment that is helping the emerging football-themed resort free up cash for building projects in Canton, Ohio.

Soon after the resort company finished building its center for excellence last fall, it looked for a way to refinance some of its debt to free up capital for future growth at the Hall of Fame Village powered by Johnson Controls.

Needing more than $200 million to build the second phase of their resort, Hall of Fame Resort & Entertainment executives are pioneering “just-in-time financing” to incrementally finance the construction.

So the resort’s Constellation Center for Excellence — the 75,000-square-foot mixed-use facility that will include sports-centric research, programming, office, and retail space — struck an energy project cooperative agreement with Canton, Canton Regional Energy Special Improvement District, and PACE Equity LLC, a Milwaukee lender, according to a regulatory filing.

The debt refinancing freed up equity for the resort and improved the cost of capital for its center for excellence project, PACE Equity said in a press release.

The refinancing also gave the resort company financial flexibility to work on its other building projects, Michael Crawford, president and CEO, said at the time.

Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) funding is an option for development projects that have quantifiable utility, water, and renewable or seismic efficiencies, PACE Equity said.

Repayment of the capital will be made through a long-term special tax assessment on the property, PACE said.

A year ago, PACE Equity kicked in $8.5 million in clean-energy funding to help redevelop two historic buildings at NASA Glenn Research Center in Fairview Park, Ohio.

Story posted, Jan. 26, 2022, by Cleveland Business Journal.