CWG Village has more problems than meet the eye

BOB MACKIN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:44 PM ET

DELHI, India -- If you thought construction delays, filthy bathrooms and bad plumbing were the only problems that dogged the 2010 Commonwealth Games Village, think again.

The 27-acre complex is going through money woes eerily similar to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Village.

The Economic Times’ Oct. 7 edition said India’s federal competition watchdog may investigate the deal between the Delhi Development Authority and privately owned village developer Emaar MGF.

Emaar MGF is a joint United Arab Emirates/India venture that won the bid to build the temporary home of athletes from 71 nations. But the DDA came to the rescue last year with a 1-billion rupee ($23-million) loan after Emaar MGF sought a 10-billion rupee ($230-million) bailout.

Emaar MGF was supposed to flog 768 suites at market rates while DDA was going to sell 400 for reduced rates. The Economic Times said Emaar MGF only sold 260, so DDA came to the rescue and bought 300 more suites for 7 billion rupees ($160 million).

The Emaar MGF website calls the development a “new landmark in the heart of Delhi” and claims it is a “certified green development.”

In Vancouver, athletes’ village developer Millennium is under pressure to repay a $560-million loan to City Hall, which refinanced the $1.1-billion project after Fortress Credit Corporation of New York walked away when the global economy crashed two years ago. Millennium sold 223 suites before February’s Games but managed to flog only 36 since the site opened to the public in May.


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