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(Note, this page is not affiliated with Jazzland, Ogden Marketing, or any other entities--it's simply here to inform you of things that I've seen, read, and heard.  None of the information here should be considered official.)

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Jazzland on track for 2000


Hard to believe the Jazzland Theme Park actually is under construction, a dream nearly a decade in the making for original developers Dian and Tom Winingder.

And despite tightening lending for real estate deals, Louis Ballero, senior vice president of Bank One, said not even financing can interfere with Jazzland now.  "(Jazzland) Financing closed early this summer.  There are no changes" to the financing package, Ballero said.  Bank One carries a substantial portion of the debt for the $95 million project, set to open in May 2000.

Earlier in the week, Ogden Entertainment announced it would up it's ante in Jazzland, adding a new package of rides estimated to cost $10 million to $15 million.

But it won't be new debt, Ballero said.  After a Wednesday meeting with a city task force organized by Mayor Marc Morial to streamline the city's handling of Jazzland, Ballero said Ogden would foot the bill.

"That's what was indicated in the meeting, that Ogden would belly up for the increased cost of the new ride package," Ballero said.

To date, only a minimal draw on the Bank One construction loan backing the deal has been made, Ballero said.