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Could Downtown Detroit's lack of hotels be why city isn't chosen for big sporting events?

Detroit passed over for Cleveland

DETROIT – Detroit has a brand-new state-of-the-art arena and a vibrant Downtown, but once again it's being passed over for another city.

The National Basketball Association announced that Cleveland, Ohio, is the latest city to land an All-Star game, something the Pistons have been after since it was announced the team would be playing at the Little Caesar's Arena.

When it comes to big events, the downtown area seems to be lacking hotels.

Detroiters are loyal and resilient, but it seems the lack of lodging is keeping big sporting events from coming to the city that's turned around.

There's no denying downtown Detroit is not the same as it was a decade ago. The lights are on, people are moving and everywhere you go, you see new development going up.

"A lot of improvements," said an anonymous woman.

Despite all that, Detroit was overlooked again for another big sports event. This time, the NBA picked Cleveland for the 2022 NBA All-Star weekend event.

"Makes me speechless," she said.

Bill Shea, with Crains Detroit, said there's no need to be speechless. We just don't have enough hotels to make it happen.

"The lack of hotel rooms, especially modern, real upscale hotel rooms, that has lagged for Detroit," Shea said.

Shea said even when the NCAA looked at Detroit for the Final Four the lack of lodging and the ability to accommodate four teams at different locations always circled back.

"They want four different hotels that can handle up to 500 hotel rooms. We just don't have that downtown," Shea said.

But, just like Detroit's comeback, the city isn't too many years ago from snagging one of these big-name sport events.


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