Patriots are dealt a setback on site for Conn. staduim
By Tina Cassidy, Globe Staff, February 24, 1999
The owner of a steam plant that would sit on the 50-yard line of the
proposed New England Patriots stadium in Hartford has rejected a $30 million
offer to relocate, adding yet another delay in the city's efforts to lure the
football team to Connecticut.
Moving the steam plant, which is owned by CTG Resources, a subsidiary of
Connecticut Natural Gas, is considered the last obstacle for Connecticut to
close the $350 million deal to bring pro football to the state.
Under an agreement signed this month, the state has until April 2 to show
that it can clear the proposed site.
If an agreement is not in place by then, the Patriots could walk away from
The Associated Press reported last night that negotiations to sell the
plant to the quasi-public Connecticut Resources Recovery Authority will
continue. CTG president Arthur Marquardt told a meeting of shareholders
yesterday that he now wants to break up the business into two parts.
The company would like to retain control of its steam and cool water
distribution system and just sell the steam-producing system, he said.
Robert E. Wright, the president of CRRA, said the idea of breaking up CTG
into several parts has been floated before.
Marquardt said he is also negotiating for the rights to sell steam and
cool water to Adriaen's Landing, the proposed $1 billion development along the
Connecticut River that includes the Patriots stadium.
The steam plant is the most pressing concern facing Connecticut Governor
John Rowland and team owner Robert Kraft. Critics say Rowland underestimated
the complexity of moving the plant. Some people close to the negotiations said
last night they were not surprised that the utility rejected the offer, which
some had said was inadequate.
``The offer for the system was not enough money, but working with a
portion of the system makes sense so that both of us can end up in a positive
win-win situation,'' Marquardt told AP.
CRRA operates a trash-to-energy plant in Hartford's South Meadows that
burns garbage from about more than 60 Connecticut towns.