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Old January 17th, 2007, 10:15 PM   #1
kavok
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Which cities have benefited significantly more from new downtown stadiums?

Which cities have benefited significantly more from new downtown stadiums?

As everyone knows, over the last 15 years or so there has been a significant building boom in new pro sports (MLB, NBA, NFL, NHL) stadiums in the downtowns of our nation’s major cities. The benefit from these stadiums can be measured in many ways, including economic “spin off” in the form of new construction, new businesses, and an improved downtown identity.

This is not meant be a discussion on whether the benefits were “worth” the costs, as that is an entirely different argument all together. Rather, please focus the discussion simply on the comparing the benefits created by stadiums in different cities, and discuss which cities “did it right,” or have received significantly more benefit from the construction of their new downtown stadiums.

Pictures are welcomed.
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Old January 17th, 2007, 10:31 PM   #2
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SAN FRANCISCO: revived the Giants as a franchise (literally turned them around); gave SF something it still another tourist attraction with its unusual bayside location. Helped promote Soma as a neighborhood and extension of downtown

DETROIT: both Tigers and Lions made a statement about the city and with events like the All Star Game (and WS) helped showcase new Detroit

ST. LOUIS: it's in the future, but new Busch Stadium is genertating still to be developed Baseball Village

SAN DIEGO: Petco serving a similiar role in SD

BALTIMORE: Camden Yards is a perfect compliment to the Inner Harbor
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Old January 17th, 2007, 10:45 PM   #3
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Adding to that Edge, you have to include Los Angeles. Staples Center is the main reason that Downtown LA has had this tremendous turnaround. Along with a few other developments (Disney Hall, Cathedral, Rail into DTLA, Traffic), Staples was the linchpin for all these Condo Towers, rehab of old building, Cleaning up Skid Row, the new parks, Convention center hotels, restaurants, everything. I think the amount of development spurred on by Staples Center easily tops 10 billion dollars in DTLA alone, and that was not a typo.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 12:15 AM   #4
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STL won a World Champion series in the brand new Busch Stadium... The Rams won big in their new "Dome"... There is a $850 million Casino and residential area under construction next to the riverfront.. and a Ballpark
Village guaranteed to rise this spring..! Plus the so many lofts and condos
that have been revitalized from neighboring warehouses that add that
somethin' special!
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Old January 18th, 2007, 01:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LosAngelesSportsFan View Post
Adding to that Edge, you have to include Los Angeles. Staples Center is the main reason that Downtown LA has had this tremendous turnaround. Along with a few other developments (Disney Hall, Cathedral, Rail into DTLA, Traffic), Staples was the linchpin for all these Condo Towers, rehab of old building, Cleaning up Skid Row, the new parks, Convention center hotels, restaurants, everything. I think the amount of development spurred on by Staples Center easily tops 10 billion dollars in DTLA alone, and that was not a typo.
of course, LASF. I guess for me, for some visual reason, the NBA/NHL type of arenas don't quite hit at the way the MLB parks and NFL stadiums do; they probably don't register with me the way they should.. But they really are just as important.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 01:39 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FMR-STL View Post
STL won a World Champion series in the brand new Busch Stadium... The Rams won big in their new "Dome"... There is a $850 million Casino and residential area under construction next to the riverfront.. and a Ballpark
Village guaranteed to rise this spring..! Plus the so many lofts and condos
that have been revitalized from neighboring warehouses that add that
somethin' special!
STL, will this pull the focus of downtown southward?
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Old January 18th, 2007, 02:08 AM   #7
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STL has prospered thanks to the new stadiums and arenas! World Class.!
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Old January 18th, 2007, 03:04 AM   #8
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With Qwest and Safeco, Seattle got much nicer and better looking venues for events that were mostly held at the Kingdome in the same neighborhood. The teams have benefitted of course.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 06:46 AM   #9
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The Excel Center in St Paul has really helped the downtown a lot, bringing new life to West 7th street in the form of bars and restaurants. At times downtown doesn't even look like it is in a coma anymore.

It can be debated as to whether it was worth the price tag.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 07:33 AM   #10
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Washington is using stadiums as the centerpiece of its redevelop plan in the area around the Anacostia River. Right now the National's new stadium is under construction and there are proposals for a new soccer stadium for DC United right across from the National's Stadium. There are also rumors of a new Redskins Stadium to be built on the Anacostia as well, although I don't see why we need it, our 10 year old 96,000 person stadium is doing just fine in Lanham, Maryland.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 07:47 AM   #11
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Its not even a MLB stadium, but it could be argued that all of Louisville's DT development is now a result of the boom that started with Louisville Slugger Field.
This was one of the first venues that started bringing people from around the suburbs into DT and showed people that there is, in fact, something special and beneficial about a strong and central downtown area.
Slugger Field, combined with Waterfront Park, has spurred somewhere around 2 billion dollars in DT investment. Not bad for a little AAA team.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 07:56 AM   #12
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There is a proposal to build a new stadium in Downtown Hartford, to lure an NHL team.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 08:28 AM   #13
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I'd like to make the point that while some have benefitted more significantly than others, stadiums rarely live up to their hype of the kind of impact they are going to have their respesctive downtowns. That's why they are almost always known as White Elephant projects. In fact, some have made good arguments that the benefits pale in comparison to all of the costs.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 02:19 PM   #14
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Quote:
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I'd like to make the point that while some have benefitted more significantly than others, stadiums rarely live up to their hype of the kind of impact they are going to have their respesctive downtowns. That's why they are almost always known as White Elephant projects. In fact, some have made good arguments that the benefits pale in comparison to all of the costs.
that seems to happen by degree. there is virtually no economic benefit from football stadiums: they play few games, Sunday morning is a slow period, people tail gate rather than use local restaurants, stores, etc.

I think NBA/NHL arenas are a mid-ground here. They may get people downtown who weren't coming otherwise and they may get them out to dinner in the city.

MLB is the top of the list. Lots of games. Ocurring in summer, they encourage a longer stay downtown. They integrate with their surroundings the best and encourage spending money outside the park on food and retail. An intangible: by their unique shape and outfield openess to views, they serve as an advertisement for their cities in ways that football stadiums cannot.

That said, in these times, we've gotten to a point where we're past the insanity of depending on local gov'ts to build these structures. IMHO, the best of the new ball parks is Current-Telephone-Name Park in San Francisco (ok AT&T); it is unusual because it was privately financed and so it was completely designed by the Giants themselves without the perhaps less baseball oriented influence of the city fathers.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 03:37 PM   #15
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I want to clarify that no downtown's resurgence can be attributed to a stadium, a mall, a casino or any other big-ticket project. Rather, these developments are a result of organic growth that is already happening. I do not believe any stadium ever saved a city. They are just another component of progress. I'd much rather see housing, retail and basic amenities in my downtown than shiny new projects with a corporate name on the top, but there is plenty of room for both and it's always nice to see them coexisting harmoniously.

While downtown St. Louis has three major sports stadiums within about a mile of each other, I don't think they are great examples of urban-friendliness. The TWA Dome (now Edward Jones Dome) promised to bring more development to the north side of downtown, which we have yet to see. Kiel Center (Savvis, Scottrade- where the Blues play) is also autonomous and has not been a catalyst for much peripheral development either. Busch Stadium will hopefully change all that, although it hasn't yet. But even with Ballpark Village well in the works, it will be a more contrived, artificial "neighborhood" in comparison to authentic ones (i.e. Wrigleyville). Nevertheless, I'm so happy downtown St. Louis will have a new and different destination.

btw, I liked the old Busch Stadium MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH better than the new one. Ballpark Village is the only real advantage to the new one, but I still don't see why it couldn't have been built around the old stadium. But alas, it's done. Sorry to digress here.
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Last edited by JivecitySTL; January 18th, 2007 at 03:45 PM.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 04:09 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edsg25 View Post
that seems to happen by degree. there is virtually no economic benefit from football stadiums: they play few games, Sunday morning is a slow period, people tail gate rather than use local restaurants, stores, etc.

I think NBA/NHL arenas are a mid-ground here. They may get people downtown who weren't coming otherwise and they may get them out to dinner in the city.

MLB is the top of the list. Lots of games. Ocurring in summer, they encourage a longer stay downtown. They integrate with their surroundings the best and encourage spending money outside the park on food and retail. An intangible: by their unique shape and outfield openess to views, they serve as an advertisement for their cities in ways that football stadiums cannot.

That said, in these times, we've gotten to a point where we're past the insanity of depending on local gov'ts to build these structures. IMHO, the best of the new ball parks is Current-Telephone-Name Park in San Francisco (ok AT&T); it is unusual because it was privately financed and so it was completely designed by the Giants themselves without the perhaps less baseball oriented influence of the city fathers.
I agree completely. Baseball fields also benefit from being much larger than Basketball arenas, they are unique structures that expand the skyline while most arenas just look like regular buildings on the outside. The new Nationals stadium hopefully will revive SE DC to a degree.

Also, google 3d warehouse has a pretty sick version of AT&T park:
Google Sketch
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Old January 18th, 2007, 04:20 PM   #17
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The Verizon Center in DC was also privately financed and did contribute a bit to the revival of the area. It has a metro stop underneath, and one of the good things about arenas is that they can also host other events like concerts, ice capades or monster trucks. I think baseball stadiums can do a great job, but I don't know if it necessarily does the best of nba,mlb, and nfl at reviving a neighborhood. They're larger scaled than arenas definitely, so usually they need to be in a lower developed or run down area in order to secure the land for a reasonable price, so in that sense, baseball stadiums are in the situation to help a crappy neighborhood more often than any other type. Arenas can be packed neatly into the normal street pattern w/ little fuss. Lastly, I do agree that more often than not, their effect is overrated, that's why it needs to be carefully done with leadership who understand how urban planning works.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 04:31 PM   #18
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wow...I am surprised that Indy wasn't mentioned before me...

Indianapolis built a downtown arena in the 1970's for the Pacers (Market Square Arena) and then started building the Hoosier (RCA) Dome without even having a team. (The Colts did move to town before it was completed). Eventually Conseco Fieldhouse would be built for the Pacers and now a new Stadium is going up for trhe Colts.

Downtown Indianapolis was a ghost town before the Colts and Pacers moved downtown. The stadiums coupled with the convention center are the catalyst for the vibrant downtown that Indy has. So, certainly, Indy has benefited tremendously from building stadiums downtown.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 04:32 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JivecitySTL View Post
btw, I liked the old Busch Stadium MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH better than the new one. Ballpark Village is the only real advantage to the new one, but I still don't see why it couldn't have been built around the old stadium. But alas, it's done. Sorry to digress here.
Someone else agrees. The Old Busch was so... iconic. I remember watching a Tigers game there. Hell, it was only built in the 60's. It couldn't have been outdated; if Fenway can still function then anywhere can function. Busch looked like the Colosseum from the inside with its distinctive design. WHo could forget that place when McGwire was lighting it up in 98?

The new Busch, while not bad at all from what i've heard or seen, just seems like every other new stadium out there. Big scoreboard, big field, cookie cutter seating. It's main draw is the view from the seats, which is very nice. Now some stadiums just become in dyer need of a replacement, like Tiger Stadium, with all of the obstructed views and rotting infrastructure. However, the Old Busch was only, what, 40?
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Old January 18th, 2007, 05:34 PM   #20
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Quote:
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I agree completely. Baseball fields also benefit from being much larger than Basketball arenas, they are unique structures that expand the skyline while most arenas just look like regular buildings on the outside. The new Nationals stadium hopefully will revive SE DC to a degree.

Also, google 3d warehouse has a pretty sick version of AT&T park:
Google Sketch
adjoutz, that's what happens when you don't have a rectangular playing surface, can design the playing field to your specification in both outfield and foul territory, and have the ability to open up your outfield to eye popping view. you can say what you want about which sport is best, but baseball blows the others out of the park (pun intended) when it comes to setting.
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