Rouse Co. drops out of Atlantic City project


The Rouse Co., chosen two years ago to oversee development of a retail-entertainment corridor linking the Atlantic City, N.J., boardwalk and a new convention center, has quit, citing financing problems and disagreement over the plans.

The decision by Rouse, which developed such acclaimed projects as Baltimore's Inner Harbor and Boston's Faneuil Hall, was neither a surprise nor a major blow, Jim Kennedy, executive director of the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, said yesterday.

The $254 million convention center is under construction, and Mr. Kennedy noted several pieces of the $175 million corridor project are already under way. The project would include a 500-room "headquarters" hotel near the convention center and a park-lined boulevard at the foot of the Atlantic City Expressway.

Mr. Kennedy said Rouse and government and business leaders thought an entertainment-shopping complex would do better on the Boardwalk than on a "gateway corridor" but have been unable to agree on a site.

He said Rouse officials also felt the public funding available -- $175 million -- was insufficient.

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