WINCHESTER, KY -- Developer Kenneth Bardwell and an entourage wearing business suits approached the governing body of a small township near Detroit with a thick binder full of plans for Bardwell's dream.
What Bardwell presented to the board of trustees in Huron Township excited the community of nearly 14,000: a multimillion-dollar recreational facility with basketball courts, an ice arena, workout area and pools.
The development would create jobs and inject life into the waning southeastern Michigan economy.
But in the months that followed, township leaders say they never received proof that Bardwell, 51, could pay for such a "grandiose" project.
Then "Mr. Bardwell just kind of went away," said John Enos, municipal services director for Huron Township.
That was in 2006.
Nearly three years later, Bardwell and his development company, Motown Technology and Sports, have re-emerged. This time, in Kentucky.
Several months ago, Bardwell's group began talks with Clark County about a $300 million sports and recreation center. Bardwell and county officials announced in January that Winchester was among six finalists for the project.
The announcement brought to Clark County the same hopes that three small Michigan cities once experienced, reports the Lexington Herald Leader.
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