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October 1, 2004

More about stadiums

• I found another interesting article in the Washington Post regarding the new stadium to be built in DC. According to the article, I was only $1 million off in my projection of $25 million in debt service per year (rock on!):

The financing would cover significant cost overruns, Green [special assistant to the mayor for economic development] said. Revenue for the project should total at least $37 million a year, more than the $26 million debt service, he said. That means the debt could be paid off early, or that there would be enough money to make the payments even if ticket sales were slow.

Again, I'm begging ... does anyone out there have any information regarding how the financial numbers break down? Just how much money do they expect to get by taxing businesses that make over $3 million? How much do they expect to get by taxing concessions and tickets? Anybody?

In addition, the article also mentioned that some people are very upset with this money being spent on stadiums:

The stadium plan has caused an outcry from community groups, who say any additional tax revenue should go to schools and libraries. But business leaders have been supportive, saying their tax burden would be bearable and worthwhile.

Williams said he would work to convince residents that spending goals for schools and libraries were not in conflict with a stadium, saying he has steadily increased spending on schools and plans a major effort to overhaul libraries.


Of course, you mention "libraries" and you peak my interest. As a librarian myself, I understand the need to keep libraries up to date and well funded. The free flow of information is vital for the well being of a democratic society. However, just because a stadium is being built does not mean libraries won't get adequate or even extra money. And the opposite is true also: how much money would libraries, or schools for that matter, get if a stadium wasn't built? Not a dime more. These are all separate issues and as such they should be treated separately with different solutions. And as I've already tried to point out (here and here) believe it or not stadiums can have a very positive effect on a community both monetarily and in regards to those nebulous "intangibles" you keep hearing about. And regarding Washington DC, if all their financial projections work out what will they do with the extra $11 million they'll make per year by building the stadium? Who knows, but they certainly could funnel it back to schools and libraries I should think.

• Well, even though Red isn't going to lobby the state legislature for a new stadium anymore, that doesn't mean he's going to stop whining or stop making outlandish claims. The latest comes from Sid Hartman:

At the Bears game, Vikings owner Red McCombs said he had given up on getting a stadium built here. A person close to the Vikings situation said McCombs might be able to persuade officials in a city such as Portland, Ore., to build an NFL stadium that would be ready for the Vikings after their lease at the Metrodome runs out in 2011. The source said the NFL doesn't want to lose this good television market, but if there isn't any progress on the stadium situation here in a couple of years, the NFL would give McCombs its blessing to move if a stadium was built elsewhere.

No way, no how is the NFL going to let Red move the Vikings. No way. Tagliabue will do everything in his power to try to get a local buyer before anything like this happens. And I would like to think Glen Taylor or Denny Hecker would do anything in their power to stop something like this from happening. Red, and Sid's mysterious source, are full of nothing but hot air. Portland? Sheesh ... is that the best they could come up with? Portland can't support a Triple-A baseball team let alone an NFL football team.

• So, who else out there is ticked off with the Twins? I just don't understand why you don't pitch Santana and Radke further into their games against the Yankees. I mean, Santana had only thrown 71 pitches when Gardy pulled him! Now we have to pray that the Twins sweep the Indians and the Angels or A's only win 2 out of three against their opponent. I can understand giving our two big pitchers a rest, I can also understand that we should be able to rely on our bullpen, but come on! I don't know, the Twins have been playing with a real lack of fire lately, and the manager has not been focusing on what is most important right now, and that is getting home field advantage. Here is hoping the Twins can sweep Cleveland. And they can do it too if only they play like they want to win rather than playing like they want to rest their starters.

• Did you know the Timberwolves are going to open training camp on October 5? It is amazing how time flies.

Posted by snackeru at October 1, 2004 4:07 PM | Stadiums

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