Comcast, owner of Philadelphia's tallest tower and a monopoly on its cable marketplace, is not the front runner in the race for the Convention Center. Though the group of legislators reviewing proposals from private contractors who want to take over the Convention Center is likely to award at least one of them a contract, it looks like Comcast will have to content itself with partial domination of Philadelphia.
SMG, a West-Conshy based company that manages convention centers in Chicago and Detriot is the current favorite for a contract. No final decision has been made yet, and the board members who spoke to the Philly Deals did so "privately" (though it's quite possible that this is a strategic leak.)
Though the Convention Center has garnered criticism of late, the change of management probably wouldn't address the issues documented by Axis Philly. Though a private contractor would replace the current chief executive of the center, there's no reason to believe that this would displace the unions.
Mayor Nutter believes that the center's management is fine as it is, and has been pushing for Convention Center management to remain the same, which is a tough sell, in light of recent news about the declining fortunes of the Convention Center.
· Unfulfilled Expectations for the Convention Center: Are Labor Costs to Blame? [Curbed Philly]
· SMG leads Comcast unit in race to run Philly's Pa. Convention Center [Philly.com]
· PA Convention Center in financial trouble; labor costs cited [Axis Philly]