State supreme court rules in favor of City of Virginia Beach in lawsuit over failed arena

Virginia Beach

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — The Supreme Court of Virginia has sided with the City of Virginia Beach in a long-standing battle over a failed arena deal.

The developers of the failed Virginia Beach arena proposal, Mid-Atlantic Arena LLC, appealed to the state supreme court after a trial court ruled in favor of the city, saying the city breached its contract when it terminated a deal to bring a privately-financed 18,000-seat arena to the Oceanfront back in 2017.

On Thursday, the state supreme court found in favor of the city, which terminated the deal because it claimed Mid-Atlantic didn’t meet all the requirements of their agreement, specifically the financing aspect of the deal.

Thursday’s decision affirms a ruling last year by the lower trial court.

Mid-Atlantic Arena had sued for $93 million in damages to cover the costs of developing and financing the arena, as well as projected future profits.

“We believed all along that the City was well within its rights to terminate the arena agreement and are pleased to learn the court agrees,” said City Attorney Mark Stiles. 

If it came to fruition, the arena would have been next to the Virginia Beach Convention Center. The city would, in turn, give the land for free, provide infrastructure upgrades and give the developer millions in taxes generated by the arena and a portion of the hotel tax for 30 years. 

The Virginia Beach City Council voted to terminate the agreement in November 2017.


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