Yankee Parking Bondholders Seek to Stave Off Bankruptcy Filing

Holders of almost $240 million of municipal debt issued to finance parking garages at the new Yankee Stadium and the operator of the facility agreed to prevent an immediate bankruptcy filing.

Owners of a majority of the debt said they wouldn’t sue Bronx Parking Development Corp. to enforce their claims on revenue or seek an acceleration of payments, according to a securities filing today.

The garages and lots, which have about 9,300 spaces, have suffered as more fans take public transportation to Major League Baseball games and drivers balk at paying $35 to park. The facilities averaged about 4,000 cars on event days and had an occupancy rate of 43 percent, according to filings. The New York Yankees have exclusive use of 600 spaces.

Bronx Parking in March disclosed that it was hiring Willkie Farr & Gallagher as bankruptcy counsel.

The bondholders and Bronx Parking agreed to terminate the so-called forbearance agreement on Aug. 1, according to the filing. It could end earlier if the operator fails to reach an accord with the Yankees by July 15 to better promote the garages to fans or if Bronx Parking files for bankruptcy, according to the filing.

The marketing arrangement needs to be acceptable to bondholders.

Nuveen Asset Management is the biggest holder of Bronx Parking debt, with a combined $116.1 million of bonds maturing in 2037 and 2046 as of Feb. 28, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The Chicago-based company held $15 million in bonds maturing in 2017 and 2027 as of Jan. 31.

Kathleen Cardoza, a Nuveen spokeswoman, didn’t immediately return a call seeking comment.

Bronx Parking missed a $6.9 million interest payment on April 1. The corporation had about $13.5 million in funds as of Dec. 31, which will decline to about $6 million at the end of 2013, according to the budget. Net operating income is forecast at $4.8 million.