It was recently announced that Rifle, Colorado-based Tubular Transport & Logistics (TTL) has entered into an 18-month lease with an option to buy the controversial Northern Plains Commerce Centre (NPCC) for $1.23 million. TTL will also pay all operating costs during its lease term and has an option to buy the surrounding land, if it so chooses.
The City of Bismarck had contributed roughly $5 million from its Vision Fund to build the NPCC in 2008 and the Centre reported a net loss of $110,000 in 2009 and $69,000 in 2010. That equals a total loss of $5,179,000.
Should TTL choose to buy the NPCC for the agreed upon price of $1.23 million, that lessens the loss to roughly $3.95 million. Sound like a bad deal? That depends on how you look at it.
While TTL’s offer won’t recoup most of the NPCC’s losses, it does save the City of Bismarck from potential further losses at the Centre. For that reason, it was wise for city leaders to accept the deal. If it hadn’t, the NPCC financial hole would’ve grown even deeper.
There is, of course, no guarantee that TTL will buy any part of the NPCC at the end of its lease, which could result in additional losses.
Many would agree that the NPCC has turned into nothing more than a colossal investment blunder. Sometimes risks are worth taking. That hasn’t proven to be true for the NPCC, unfortunately.
What do you think of the deal… good, bad? How do you feel about the NPCC in general? Share your thoughts below.