Texas Rangers Ball Park

 

Estrada Hinojosa is serving as sole financial advisor to the City of Arlington (the “City”) on a new $1 billion ballpark for the Texas Rangers, the Major League Baseball franchise. This new stadium, scheduled to open for the 2020 season, will be located adjacent to the current ballpark and within walking distance to the AT&T Stadium, where the National Football League Dallas Cowboys play.  Estrada Hinojosa has worked with the City for the past few years to refund/restructure existing debt and to facilitate the financing of this new stadium.  The City held a successful venue election in November 2016 which allows for both the existing Cowboys debt and the new Rangers debt to be serviced from the same taxes. Under current finance plans, the City is expecting to refund approximately $145 million of existing Cowboys bonds later this year and to issue new money bonds of approximately $500 million for the Rangers in early 2018 to finance City-related expenses of the ballpark project.

Background: Estrada Hinojosa has been the sole FA to the City of Arlington since 2009. During this time, we have helped the City with the sale of 49 transactions for a combined par value of $1.37 billion, including the three transactions for the Rangers ballpark.  Previously, we worked with the City as an underwriter, including the 2006 transaction to finance the new Cowboys stadium.  In our current role as financial advisor, we have worked closely with City staff to analyze different scenarios to finance the construction of a new ballpark for the Texas Rangers.  This would replace the existing Globe Life Park where they currently play.  In part as a result of our analysis, the City undertook a vote to allow special taxes collected by the City to support both the existing Cowboys and new Rangers related debt, enabling the financing of the ball park.  The special tax measure was overwhelmingly approved by voters in November 2016.  These special taxes consist of a half percent (0.5%) sales tax, two percent (2.0%) hotel tax, and five percent (5.0%) short-term vehicle rental tax.  These taxes will serve as the pledged revenues of the ballpark financing.

Transaction: The new ballpark financing consists of a two-step process: a) a refunding of outstanding Cowboys related debt, and b) a new money transaction for the new ballpark.  The refunding of $145 million of existing debt, which will took place early  fall 2017 and will be used to create debt service savings and to facilitate the new money issuance.  The refunding will produce over 5% PV savings but will also push back the final maturity of existing debt by nearly a decade.  Currently collected excess revenues will also be used to reduce the size of the refunding escrow.  The new money transaction, which is scheduled to occur in early 2018, will fund a project fund of $500 million, consist of senior and subordinate lien bonds, and include escalating debt service that matches the growth of the pledged revenues.  The  transaction will consist of both tax-exempt and taxable debt, with current interest bonds and possibly some capital appreciation bonds, and covenants that allow for excess revenues to be used to turbo bonds (accelerate payment) prior to their stated maturity.  In total, the City expects to issue nearly $590 million in debt to refund the existing debt and provide net proceeds to construct the stadium.

Estrada Hinojosa has worked cooperatively with City staff, the senior manager, and other finance team members to produce a finance plan that it will execute over the next half year.

 


 

$456.425 Million Senior and Subordinate Lien Special Tax Revenue Bonds, Series 2018A-C

History

  • The City of Arlington has been the home of the Texas Rangers Major League Baseball Team since 1972
  • Although the lease was not expiring until 2024, the City and Rangers negotiated a new agreement early which goes through 2054.
  • A venue election was held on 11/8/16 to allow current special taxes to support both the Rangers and Cowboys debt
  • Special taxes consist of 1/2 % sales tax, 2.0% hotel occupancy tax (HOT), and 5.0% short term vehicle rental tax
  • EH helped the City with $110.2 million Senior Lien Special Tax Revenue Refunding Bonds, Series 2017 which closed in September
  • Refunded/restructured $146.9 million of Cowboys special tax revenue bonds in anticipation of new money
  • The City is contributing $500 million to the project which is expected to cost approximately $1.25 billion and open in 2020.

Structure

  • Closed lien structure with no ability to issue additional new money
  • All residual revenues used to retire debt early
  • Senior lien bonds structured with minimum coverage of 1.30X using historical revenues to meet the additional bonds test (ABT) established under a new master indenture
  • Subordinate lien bonds structured with minimum coverage of 1.25X based on pro forma revenues and then level debt service
  • DSRFs funded with surety policies from AGM and BAM for senior and sub lien respectively
  • $11.02 million to be transferred from existing senior DSRF to pay off debt early

Series Summary

  • $266.080 Million Senior Lien Special Tax Revenue Bonds, Series 2018A
  • AGM insured serial bonds 2025 to 2038 with term bonds in 2043, 2044 and 2048
  • All bonds had a 5% coupon except the 2044 term bonds which had a 4% coupon
  • 10-Year Par call on 2/15/28
  • $28.250 Million Senior Lien Special Tax Revenue Bonds, Taxable Series 2018B
  • Uninsured serial bonds from 2018 to 2032 with term bonds in 2037 and 2041
  • Bonds sold at par
  • Make-whole call at comparable Treasury rate+25 bps
  • $171.095 Million Subordinate Lien Special Tax Revenue Bonds, Series 2018C
  • BAM insured serial bonds 2022 to 2038 with term bonds in 2041, 2045 and 2048
  • All bonds had a 5% coupon
  • Mix of call features on 2/15/21, 23, 25 and 28 to allow for early redemptions

Ratings

  • Senior Lien Bonds: AA+ (Fitch), A1 (Moody’s), A+ (S&P)
  • Subordinate Lien Bonds: A3 (Moody’s)

Rent: Base rent of $2 million /year also pledged to the taxable bonds

 

 

     Rangers and Cowboys Special Tax Revenue Bond Debt Profile.

 

 

 

  

Arlington Rangers Baseball

Rendering of the new Rangers Stadium 

Arlington Rangers Baseball Park

 
 
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