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Pick your NASCAR Hall of Fame favorite

  • ATLANTA

    Votes: 16 21.6%
  • CHARLOTTE

    Votes: 39 52.7%
  • DAYTONA BEACH

    Votes: 12 16.2%
  • KANSAS CITY

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • RICHMOND

    Votes: 7 9.5%
1 - 20 of 79 Posts

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Charlotte
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Pick your NASCAR Hall of Fame favorite

As the NASCAR Hall of Fame race heats up, I thought a poll might be in order. Pick your favorite and tell why. For a little background on each competitor, I found a nice article from the Atlanta Journal that does a good job of summarizing each city and their bid.

SIZING UP THE COMPETITION
A LOOK AT THE 5 CITIES BIDDING FOR THE NASCAR HALL OF FAME

Published on: 05/29/05

ATLANTA

Why Atlanta should get it: A downtown location near Centennial Olympic Park, the Georgia Aquarium and new World of Coca-Cola could drive larger crowds than anywhere else. Atlanta's strong corporate support of NASCAR should also help.

Why Atlanta shouldn't get it: While popular and well-rooted here, NASCAR is not as identified with Atlanta as it is with, say, Charlotte or Daytona Beach, Fla.

Sports background: Atlanta is the only city in the running with four major league franchises. Megasports attractions are nothing new for a city that has hosted two Super Bowls and the Olympics and has other high-profile events every year. Atlanta Motor Speedway is home to two Nextel Cup races annually.

The bid: Atlanta hopes to put the hall of fame across the street from Centennial Olympic Park on land owned by Ted Turner. The hall would cost about $92 million, with as much as $25 million projected to come from the state, $5 million from the city through special tax breaks for building downtown, $30 million from corporate sponsors and the rest from bank loans, according to state documents. Atlanta's bid team believes the attraction could draw 1 million visitors a year.

NASCAR fan support: The two Nextel Cup weekends at Atlanta Motor Speedway have a $455 million impact on the area economy, according to one study. Atlanta consistently ranks high in TV viewers for NASCAR events. For this year's Daytona 500, the Atlanta TV rating was 20.4, compared with a national rating of 10.9. Markets with higher ratings included Orlando and Charlotte.

Other tourist sites: The grand plan is for a NASCAR hall of fame to work in tandem with other attractions such as Centennial Olympic Park, Georgia Aquarium, World of Coca-Cola, CNN Center, Georgia World Congress Center, Georgia Dome, Philips Arena and Turner Field.

— Tim Tucker


CHARLOTTE

Why Charlotte should get it: Charlotte has become the hub of NASCAR racing, with approximately 90 percent of racing teams with headquarters there. The city's new slogan, "Racing was built here. Racing belongs here," is hard to dispute. The city and surrounding area already are popular with fans searching for race-related tourist attractions.

Why Charlotte shouldn't get it: Numerous race shops already have their own museums and gift shops, so the hall of fame's impact could be diluted. And with NASCAR's effort to become more national, it might not make sense to build its hall in an area where the market already is saturated.

Sports background: Charlotte has professional teams in football and basketball, but NASCAR is the city's No. 1 sport. The first top-level series race was held at the Charlotte Fairgrounds in 1949. In the 1970s, before NASCAR expanded its schedule, the city was near many tracks where races were held, so teams began building race shops there.

The bid: Charlotte has picked a downtown site near the convention center, hired a renowned architectural firm (I.M. Pei) and persuaded the state Legislature to raise the hotel-motel tax and channel the money to the hall, which is expected to cost more than $130 million. The federal government is allowing the state to raise $20 million by selling acreage at a highway interchange next to the proposed hall of fame site. Race track owner Bruton Smith told reporters in Charlotte he would pledge $50 million toward a monorail project, which would connect the hall to Lowe's Motor Speedway. Smith owns six tracks, including Lowe's and Atlanta Motor Speedway.

NASCAR fan support: The three race weekends at Lowe's Motor Speedway, headlined by two Nextel Cup points races and NASCAR's all-star event, draw more than 150,000 fans per race. But there are empty seats, which track officials blame on a slumping textile industry in the Carolinas.

Other tourist sites: Many racing teams have their own museums, and there are auto racing attractions not affiliated with race teams. The city has an art museum, the Mint Museum, and several historic sites, including the King's Mountain Revolutionary War battleground.

— Rick Minter


DAYTONA BEACH, FLA.

Why Daytona should get it: The city is the home of NASCAR headquarters and the France family, which controls the sport. There already are two major NASCAR events, the Daytona 500 and the Pepsi 400, at Daytona International Speedway.

Why Daytona shouldn't get it: The city already has an attraction, Daytona USA, and public support appears to be lagging for another NASCAR-related attraction. Without government support, many consider Daytona Beach's bid futile.

Sports background: Daytona Beach is known as the "Birthplace of Speed" because of the speed trials and beach races that were held there from the earliest days of the automobile. The city also is home to NASCAR's Super Bowl, the Daytona 500.

The bid: The Florida Legislature did not authorize a requested $30 million tax break for the hall, but organizers already had based their finances on private sector funds. The city has hired an architectural firm to design a hall that would cost more than $70 million. If Daytona Beach is selected, many say the hall would be built on property on, or next to, Daytona International Speedway.

NASCAR fan support: More than 200,000 fans come to Daytona twice a year for NASCAR races, and tens of thousands show up for the annual Bike Week festivities. Overall, 9 million people visit the area each year. City leaders expect the hall would attract at least 400,000 people annually.

Other tourist sites: To the east are the popular beaches of the Atlantic Ocean, and to the west are Disney World and other Orlando attractions.

— Rick Minter


KANSAS CITY, KAN.

Why Kansas City should get it: NASCAR wants to speed growth beyond its Southeastern roots, and Kansas City's location in the center of the country would make a statement about the sport's national vision.

Why Kansas City shouldn't get it: It would be risky for NASCAR to put its hall of fame so far from its roots and historical fan base.

Sports background: Kansas City is a two-state metro area that in one state (Kansas) has the state-of-the-art Kansas Speedway and in the other (Missouri) has two major league sports franchises, the football Chiefs and the baseball Royals.

The bid: Kansas City has a high-traffic site picked out next to Kansas Speedway: the 400-acre, $730 million Village West retail and entertainment development. Kansas City-based HOK Sport+Venue+Event — architect of many of the country's highest-profile sports venues of recent decades — has signed on to design the project if Kansas City lands it. The bidding group hasn't said how the estimated $100 million project would be financed, but believes the area's success in getting the $250 million track built lends credence to its prospects.

NASCAR fan support: Kansas Speedway opened in 2001 and had sold out races in its first four seasons, igniting massive economic activity in the surrounding Village West area. Nearly 82,000 season tickets have been sold this year. The track is attempting to land a second Nextel Cup event.

Other tourist sites: The still-growing Village West development includes Cabela's — "The world's foremost outfitter of hunting, fishing and outdoor gear" — which has a 180,000-square-foot showroom. In addition to the track and the thriving retail and entertainment attractions, the Village West area includes the Kansas City T-Bones minor league baseball stadium.

— Tim Tucker


RICHMOND

Why Richmond should get it: Richmond believes it offers the best location, near Washington and other major population centers. More than 50 percent of the U.S. population is within a one-day drive of Richmond.

Why Richmond shouldn't get it: Richmond was not among the four cities — Atlanta, Charlotte, Daytona Beach and Kansas City — initially invited to bid for the attraction. This could indicate it started as a long shot.

Sports background: Richmond International Raceway is the second-oldest stop on the Nextel Cup tour, hosting an event since 1953 and two per year since 1959. Richmond also is the longtime home of the Braves' top minor league team, the Richmond Braves.

The bid: A nonprofit group called Virginians Racing for the Hall of Fame is helping the Economic Development Authority of Henrico County with the bid. Before last week's Nextel Cup race at Richmond, the group unveiled parts of its plan for a $103 million facility. The group plans to offer NASCAR several locations, including one at the raceway. Part of the pitch has been a postcard campaign asking Virginians to let NASCAR know of their support for the project. The financing for the hall probably would be a mix of private and public sources.

NASCAR fan support: The 107,097-seat track has sold out 27 consecutive Nextel Cup races. According to track officials, approximately 2.5 million fans from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries have attended races there. When NASCAR.com asked race insiders, "What is your favorite track?" 26 percent named Richmond, more than any other. The Virginia group projects a hall of fame in Richmond would draw 700,000 visitors per year.

Other tourist sites: The Virginia state Capitol, designed by Thomas Jefferson; historic homes and neighborhoods; Civil War sites and museums; art, science and children's museums.

— Tim Tucker

Link:
http://www.wcnc.com/sharedcontent/APStories/stories/D8A9QLOO0.html
 

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I'm a bit of a homer but I think Charlotte narrowly beats out Daytona on this one. It's in both the historical and contemporary heart of the sport, it's already the host of most of the teams' headquarters, it along with Daytona hosts more major events than any other location, it's a growing city with a blooming downtown area, and more than any other location its citizens give something of a crap whether or not the city wins this contest. Plus, when NASCAR's popularity bubble finally bursts and the organization starts to go the way of the NHL, Charlotte's still going to be there for them. I think the HoF would probably stand a better chance of being taken seriously here than anywhere else (again, with Daytona as a close second), and probably would make at least as much money here due to the repeat business of multi-generational fans and travelers to the big races.
 

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Charlotte
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I’ve also thought of Charlotte as a lock. But, I was listening to sports talk radio last week and they were offering compelling arguments about why the city might not get it. It’s touched upon in the AJC article, but basically the counter point is simply the question of; “What more could Charlotte offer NASCAR beyond what it has already?” Further, one of the main goals of the Hall is to attract "new" fans. Having it in Charlotte may not help that effort so much. But presonally, I don't see it going anywhere else. These people around here will be jumping off the BofA building if Charlotte doesn't get this thing.

Here's a recent article from USA Today.

Posted 5/26/2005 11:05 PM Updated 5/28/2005 4:22 PM

5 cities gun to win race for NASCAR Hall of Fame
By Barbara Hagenbaugh, USA TODAY

CONCORD, N.C. — As NASCAR drivers hit the track here this weekend for the Coca-Cola 600, another race — one with economic implications for decades to come — will be shifting into high gear.

Proposals from the five cities vying to land the NASCAR Hall of Fame are due Tuesday. The stakes are huge: Hundreds of thousands of visitors are expected to bring in millions of dollars annually to the city that wins the hall of fame, making it what is expected to become the most widely attended sports shrine in the USA. (Related graphic: Race is on for NASCAR Hall of Fame)

Jobs will be created directly in the approximately $100 million construction of the building and in the day-to-day operation of the hall. Jobs may also be added indirectly in a number of areas. For example, hotels may add desk clerks, and restaurants may add servers to meet demand. Also, the hall of fame is expected to bring prestige and an additional selling point for cities as they seek to attract businesses and convention-goers.

"It brings jobs and dollars and a brand," says Pat McCrory, mayor of Charlotte, near Lowe's Motor Speedway, where the race will be held Sunday before an estimated crowd of 200,000. "It's a unique opportunity in the life of a city to have a unique niche for generations to come."

Charlotte is competing against Atlanta; Daytona Beach, Fla.; Kansas City, Kan.; and Richmond, Va. Each city is keeping its design ideas secret, and each plans to pay for the building with private and public money.

The competition is strong. Organizers in Atlanta are touting the area as the home of the largest number of NASCAR sponsors and as a vacation and convention destination that can bring in the most visitors to the hall. Daytona Beach is drawing on its history as the birthplace of the sport as well as the fact that it's home to NASCAR headquarters. Kansas City is focusing on its central location in the USA, arguing it can bring in visitors from across the country and perhaps widen interest in NASCAR geographically. Richmond is stressing that it is centrally located on the East Coast and is close to several major metropolitan areas.

Charlotte has been the most vocal and visible in its lobbying, including using a car as a petition for supporters to sign. Organizers in North Carolina are touting the state as the home of the largest number of racing teams, arguing it will have the easiest access to drivers and their memorabilia and can create a multiday NASCAR vacation experience, in which fans can go to the hall of fame and then tour team headquarters and racetracks.

NASCAR is expected to make a decision on the hall of fame by the end of the year. The hall will likely not open until 2008 or 2009 and will likely feature an annual induction ceremony, interactive exhibits and appearances by drivers. The annual All-Star race may also go to the city with the hall of fame, creating an additional revenue stream.

Fans becoming more affluent

Ten years ago, cities might have winced at the thought of linking themselves to NASCAR, McCrory notes. But in the past decade, the sport has risen from a largely Southern sport to one that is appealing to a much wider — and richer — demographic.

"NASCAR has taken the knock as the bubba sport," says Larry DeGaris, director of the Center for Sports Sponsorship at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Va. But "NASCAR fans are ... more affluent, and they're becoming more affluent."

The average household income for a NASCAR fan was $60,200 in 2004, according to a study conducted by DeGaris. That's higher than the national average of $58,036 in 2003, according to the Census Bureau. NASCAR fans in the 18- to 39-year-old category are even more affluent, averaging $64,500 per household, DeGaris says.

And NASCAR fans spend money. More than one-fifth of the estimated 30 million "avid" NASCAR fans attended a race during the 2004 season, DeGaris estimates. Fans said they spent an average of $232 on NASCAR-related merchandise, such as clothing or collectibles, during the previous 12 months, according to the 2004 study. Younger fans spent an average of $316.

Many of the fans come from far away and stay for days at a time when they go to a race. Nearly two-thirds of those coming to Lowe's Motor Speedway live out of state.

"They're not coming down in the morning and leaving," says Lowe's Motor Speedway President H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler, noting thousands of tickets are sold at his track to residents of Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York and Maryland. "They're staying. And they're spending money."

Tremendous financial impact

Doug Akin, 55, figures he spends about $3,000 a year on NASCAR. The electrician from Griffin, Ga., and his son-in-law travel to about five races a year with a camper, typically staying three to four days. Last weekend they were camping at Lowe's for the All-Star Challenge.

"The sport's growing," Akin says after paying $5 to tour the North Carolina Auto Racing Hall of Fame in Mooresville. "Whoever thought (races would) be in Texas, Arizona or California?"

Wheeler, a legend in NASCAR circles, illustrates how much the sport has evolved. In 1976, he made a speech to the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce's board of directors. When it came time for the customary "thank you" gift, the chairman gave him a pair of white socks and a six-pack of Pabst Blue Ribbon beer.

"And I thought, 'Boy, we have a long way to go,' " Wheeler says.

Wearing a blue blazer, tan slacks and drinking a Fresca in his expansive office overlooking the racetrack, Wheeler jokes that he hardly gets that kind of reception nowadays.

"Interest always follows money," he says.

Money has been flowing into the sport. Retail sales of NASCAR products surged 250% from 1995 to 2004 while attendance increased 28%. Television viewership rose 83% in that time and now only trails the National Football League, according to NASCAR. Recognizing the draw of the sport and the loyalty of its fans, a wide array of Fortune 500 companies, such as Target, Home Depot and Procter & Gamble, are corporate sponsors.

Don Jakeway, president and CEO of the Michigan Economic Development Corp. in Lansing, notes that the combined revenue brought in from the Ryder Cup golf tournament last year, the Major League Baseball All-Star game this year and the National Football League Super Bowl in 2006 will just match what the state brings in each year from two NASCAR events.

"It has a tremendous, tremendous financial impact," he says.

Also contributing to the rising economic importance of NASCAR is the growing fan base among women, who purchase or influence the purchase of the majority of household spending decisions, according to Phil Rist of marketing research firm BIGresearch.

NASCAR estimates that 40% of its fans are women.

For Sylvia Spury, 47, NASCAR has been a hobby for most of her life. When the Boston native wed 30 years ago, she told her fiancé they could get married on a Saturday as long as they could be at the track by 4 p.m. They were, and several children, grandchildren and many races later, they are still married.

"I love everything about it," says Spury, now of Mooresville, who last week was carrying a NASCAR purse and wearing a jersey and checkered-flag earrings. "Every race is different. I like the sound. And I gotta smell the rubber."

Embedded in the culture

Nowhere perhaps is NASCAR more embedded in the culture than in North Carolina, particularly in the Charlotte area. Most of the Nextel Cup racing teams, the premier division of NASCAR, are based in the state. The motor sports industry brought more than $5 billion to North Carolina's economy in 2003, according to a study by the University of North Carolina, Charlotte.

"This is where the drivers are, this is where the crew chiefs are, this is where the owners are," says Marshall Carlson, general manager of Charlotte-based Hendrick Motorsports, home of Jimmie Johnson, currently in first place for the season, and Jeff Gordon, who's in third.

About 200,000 visitors came to the 130-acre Hendrick facility last year, visiting the team museum, watching the mechanics and engineers work on the cars and hoping to get a glimpse of drivers. On a weekday morning last week, driver Brian Vickers was on the shop floor, just days before placing third in the All-Star race.

In addition to being an income generator — some $1.4 million was spent at the Hendrick Motorsports gift shop in person and online in 2004 — the team is also a job generator. Currently, 512 people work at Hendrick Motorsports, which far more resembles a high-tech manufacturing facility than a greasy garage. Forty-two employees on staff have engineering degrees, three have Ph.D.s. Average compensation is 40% above the regional average, Carlson says.

In nearby Mooresville, team headquarters, otherwise known as racing shops, have replaced textile mills as some of the main employers. That has led to a boom in associated companies moving to the area, such as parts manufacturers, a pit crew instruction school, high-tech wind tunnels, even lawyers specializing in licensing.

In some ways, because the Charlotte area has become so dependent on the motor sports industry, it has more to lose than the other cities competing for the hall.

Winning the hall would help ensure that teams and the industry stay in the area, says Cathy Bessant, chairwoman of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce and global marketing executive at Bank of America.

"We have a huge stake in seeing motor sports continue in the region," says Bessant, whose first job was on the cleaning crew at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Mich.

The Charlotte boosters are spending $1 million on the bidding process for the NASCAR Hall of Fame. That has covered the cost of hiring Pei Cobb Freed & Partners, the firm founded by legendary architect I.M. Pei. Bright-yellow billboards are springing up around town with the motto, "Racing Was Built Here, Racing Belongs Here," and 100,000 buttons have been distributed to drum up support among locals.

But for many NASCAR fans, the location is of little importance.

"I would go no matter where it was," Akin of Griffin, Ga., says.

Link:
http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/2005-05-26-nascar-cover_x.htm
 

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Sic Semper Tyrannis
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Its between Richmond and Charlotte for me.
 

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I'd love Atlanta to get it, and I'm a racing fan, but more open wheel F1 type, but it would get more local attention in Charlotte. It would be more traditional to put it in Charlotte, but it would get more attention in Atlanta. However, with the massive growth in NASCAR's popularity over the last 15 years and with the termination of many of the old NASCAR races at small tracks in the Carolina's and southern Virginia, I think it would be better placed in NASCAR's birthplace by being in Charlotte.
 

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If this is really all about money, I think it would make the most sense to put it in Atlanta. Charlotte's projected attendance for their bid is the same as the Atlanta Cyclorama.......I think Atlanta's bid put's attendance at about 1million people a year. Plus it spreads things out for NASCAR, there are plenty of racing attractions in Charlotte and Daytona, building the Hall of Fame in Atlanta makes it more accessable to more people.

That being said, I would so much rather see a world class civil rights museum or something like that downtown.....................
 

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It seems to be between Charlotte and Richmond. Charlotte will most likely get it. From a business/ increased fan base perspective, Richmond makes the most sense, but tried and true Charlotte is a safer bet, even though the Richmond population and visitor numbers trounce Charlotte's.

Richmond is being smarter, I believe, in its placement of the HOF. Realizing that many NASCAR fans travel via RV, downtown was never considered. Overnight parking and easy access was. The marketing visuals were pretty clever too (perhaps too high brow). It showed colonial children rolling a racecar tire with a stick down Duke of Gloucester Street in Colonial Williamsburg (the ye' olde stick and hoop toy of colonial America). I thought that it was pretty cleaver while taking advantage of another local drawl. I understand Civil War references were also used but I haven't seen any of those.

Here's a to another article (from the Richmond Times Dispatch) describing the advantages and shortfalls of each location. Note the 300 mile population and visitation numbers. Also note attendance issues and local ego / business issues…..


THE FIVE: Contenders
ATLANTA

Projected cost: $92 million
Metro population: 4.1 million
Population within 300 miles: 31.8 million
Size/location: 100,000-square-foot facility in downtown Atlanta, near Centennial Olympic Park, Georgia Aquarium and the World of Coca-Cola
Financing: Split three ways among corporate backers, state and local funding and loans
Projected annual attendance: 1 million
Star-power support: Former champion Bill Elliott, a 13-time most popular driver in Cup history, is lobbying NASCAR executives on behalf of his native state.
On the ballot because:
The "Capital of the South" is a popular tourist destination that has played host to major sporting events such as the Super Bowl and the Olympics and also has a full roster of professional teams. Area is home to several heavyweight NASCAR sponsors (Coke, Home Depot, UPS, SunTrust) that are actively involved in supporting and funding the project. City was first to contact NASCAR two years ago about doing a museum.

Possible drawbacks:

Atlanta Motor Speedway has struggled to fill its 125,000 seats for its two annual Cup races.
The city's maze of highways is infamous for nightmarish congestion.

CHARLOTTE, N.C.

Projected cost: $137 million (includes $37.5 million designated for adding ballroom to convention center)
Metro population: 1.5 million
Population within 300 miles: 32.9 million
Size/location: 100,000-square-foot facility on a 5-acre site in downtown Charlotte adjacent to the convention center
Financing: Much of the money would be raised through a hotel-tax increase; private companies and the state also would contribute.
Projected annual attendance: 400,000
Star-power support: Rick Hendrick, an auto-dealership magnate whose Cup teams have won five championships and 134 races, has fronted a public-relations blitz that ranks tops among bidders.
On the ballot because:

Area is the home base for about 100 Nextel Cup, Busch and Craftsman Truck Series teams that already attract fans in droves. It's also the headquarters for NASCAR licensing and research and development. State is rich in racing heritage, producing legendary drivers such as Junior Johnson, Richard Petty, Dale Earnhardt and Ned Jarrett. City played host to first Cup-level race in 1949.

Possible drawbacks:
Local track Lowe's Motor Speedway is owned by Speedway Motorsports Inc., a rival of International Speedway Corp. that is controlled by the France family of NASCAR. SMI Chairman O. Bruton Smith has warred with NASCAR and the Frances, four of whom will make final decision on the site.
If purpose of the hall is to attract new fans, NASCAR might shy away from placing it in stock-car bastion.

DAYTONA BEACH, FLA.

Projected cost: $107 million
Metro population: 493,175
Population within 300 miles: 20 million
Size/location: 80,000-square-foot facility, likely on the grounds of Daytona International Speedway
Financing: Entirely through the private sector and loans; owned by a community nonprofit organization
Projected annual attendance: 400,000
On the ballot because:
Birthplace of NASCAR, which was formed in 1948 after a meeting at the Streamline Hotel
Home of NASCAR and International Speedway Corp. headquarters
Plays host to Daytona 500, the crown jewel of the Nextel Cup Series schedule

Possible drawbacks:
State already pulled plug on $30 million funding proposal.
Likely location is already home to Daytona USA, a popular interactive attraction.
It's the smallest metropolitan location among bidders and farthest south.

KANSAS CITY, KAN.
Projected cost: $100 million
Metro population: 1.7 million
Population within 300 miles: 17.8 million
Size/location: 100,000-square-foot facility at Village West, a booming $1 billion retail development of warehouse stores, hotels and restaurants just east of Kansas Speedway
Financing: Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius has signed law to issue bonds for hall; other private funding available. Bid committee is touting "no taxpayer burden"
Projected annual attendance: 750,000

On the ballot because:
Area's "Heartland of America" location makes it the most centralized of the bidders and the closest to the West Coast, where NASCAR is making a push for more fans by adding races and building Seattle track.
State and local officials developed strong ties with NASCAR and International Speedway Corp. in building Kansas Speedway.
Kansas City is headquarters of Sprint, which is merging with NASCAR title sponsor Nextel.
Fans have flocked to the track since its 2001 opening, selling out every Cup race while increasing capacity by 10,000 to 81,687.

Possible drawbacks:

Lack of NASCAR history is glaring, and area hasn't produced any star drivers.
Midwest plays host to only two Cup races -- Kansas City and Joliet, Ill.
Surroundings are most sparsely populated of bidders.

RICHMOND

Projected cost: $103 million
Metro population: 996,512
Population within 300 miles: 55.9 million
Size/location: 100,000-square-foot facility, likely at Richmond International Raceway or within a few miles of the track
Financing: Expected to be 50/50 blend of public and private sources
Projected annual attendance: 700,000
Star-power support: Cup drivers and Emporia natives Hermie and Elliott Sadler have been recruited as spokesmen.
On the ballot because:

More than half the U.S. population lies within 500 miles of Richmond; accessibility is provided by proximity to several highways.
Location is nearest among bidders to New York, a highly coveted market where a NASCAR track is on the drawing board.
RIR has been playing host to Cup races since 1953, and Virginia has produced scads of stock-car stars (the Sadlers, Jeff and Ward Burton, Ray Hendrick, Ricky Rudd, Sonny Hutchins, Eddie Crouse, Tommy Ellis, Lennie Pond) from a bevy of short tracks.

Possible drawbacks:
Fighting perception of being an underdog in battle with several bigger and wealthier cities.
Only city among the five finalists that wasn't announced by NASCAR at the outset in January, raising questions about why it wasn't in initial race.

* -- Metro population numbers based on 2000 census
 

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Veteran Lurker
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With biasy aside, I honestly think Atlanta is the best spot for this Nascar shrine.

Charlotte is a great pic, very true. Nascar's veins run throughout the city, but you've got to think about the 'dollas' being made by this museum. Atlanta is a very centrally located city.
The Daytona 500 is without a doubt the biggest Nascar cup race in the circuit. Unspeakable numbers of fans pass through Atlanta on the way to Daytona every year, a nascar shrine on the way would be a fun stop! Even if travel plans don't include a pass by Atlanta, die hard fans wouldn't mind driving an extra hour for this great pit stop. It just seems like Charlotte is out of the way. Nascar fans don't want to make special vacations just to see the museum, they'd rather see this in the same trip.

Now if you want to go into figures like corporate sponsors, populations, area attractions, etc...Atlanta is the best spot. More people would see the museum if it were in Atlanta. Charlotte should have it because of the history, but if we're speaking about making money...which is what everyone is out to do, Atlanta is hard to beat.
 

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Charlotte
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Dale said:
So, as regards Charlotte's bid, the proposed monorail would run all the way from the CBD to Concord ?!
That is just a proposal by Bruton Smith, the owner of the track in Charlotte. I'm certain the monorail was not part of the official bid.
 

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The Charlotte HOF renderings look really nicel. I M Pei has done some great stuff. I haven't seen it, but I'm guessing that the Richmond one will look like a brick, Mount Vernon inspired Wal-Mart.
 

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Charlotte
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Westin Peachtree said:
It just seems like Charlotte is out of the way. Nascar fans don't want to make special vacations just to see the museum, they'd rather see this in the same trip.
I think good arguments can be made for all the cities. But, I think you’re mistaken about Charlotte being “out of the way”. Keep in mind the area already attracts tons of fans to see all the race team headquarters and the existing races, including the All-Star race.

“The speedway has a 10-day period, May 19-29, in which it stages the Nextel All-Star race and the Coca-Cola 600. He anticipates 500,000 fans for the period…” http://www.charlotteusa.com/Media/media_news_detail.asp?PressRelease_cd=1013

Atlanta would be a good location. But one potential drawback is that the city may already have too many attractions. Charlotte can certainly offer NASCAR more time and attention.

One more note (for all), Charlotte’s estimate of 400,000 HOF visitors is a “minimum” conservative estimate. The mayor and other members of the bid committee have said repeatedly they picked that number simply to be conservative.
 

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Haven't any other renderings become available yet for the other cities? I'm reserving my vote until I see what the other cities brewed up.
 

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Charlotte
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
RICHMOND’S HALL OF FAME RENDERING

"This artist's rendering of the proposed Richmond "NASCAR Hall of Fame" shows the museum at the center with shops to the left and a hotel to the right."

All, please note the idea of the poll is simply to express where you think the Hall belongs. As one gentleman said on the news tonight, NASCAR could very well say, “Great building Charlotte, if you don’t mind, we’re going to put it in Kansas City.”
 

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If the poll is where it belongs, it's without question Charlotte, followed by Daytona.

If the question is who has the best chance of getting it, without having seen all the renderings, I put Charlotte and KC in an even heat right now. Charlotte has everything going for it except for the one factor that may count most...Nascar's continued desire to expand into new markets.

Personally, I don't think centralized location is enough of a factor to put the HOF in KC, but it's not my decision. Look at the other halls. Cooperstown, Canton, Toronto, etc. Not exactly centrally located, yet tourists from coast to coast flock to them. And it's not like Nascar fans haven't been known to travel for the love of their sport.

P.S. That Richmond rendering does nothing for me. They needed an AMAZING bid to beat out the big dawgs, and if that's all they can come up with then I'd count them out right now.
 

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What's everyone's opinion of the North Wilkesboro bid? They are the city that can claim "birthplace" of the cities bidding, but I don't think their late bid will get a second look, or a first one, from NASCAR. They seem to be the small town moonshine roots NASCAR is trying to get away from, even though the sport grew from moonshine runners in Northwest NC and Southwest VA. Charlotte is the obivious center of the sport and already a NASCAR tourist city, with most of the race shops, the all-star race and car related museums. I really like the Charlotte proposal and just seeing that makes me want to visit Uptown and explore exhibits from my favorite teams. I do feel it's a little seperated from Charlotte's racing area (Concord), but it should help bring more race traffic to the core. I can't make a NASCAR connection to Atlanta, Richmond and Kansas City (other than tracks) like I can Charlotte, North Wilkesboro and Daytona. Atlanta and Charlotte will likely be front runners, since they can give NASCAR an urban, big city, image and bring in the most visitors. Daytona offers sport history and KC the central location, but they can't match Charlotte. I think Charlotte will get it and I think Charlotte was selected from the beginning, but they want Charlotte and NC taxpayers to pay for it, so it has to be a multi-city contest. :no: Again, it's too bad the North Wilkesboro bid isn't recieving much notice, since they could really use the tourist dollars for their economy and they have the moonshine roots of the sport. It was bad enough they had to lose their First Union 400 race, but then North Wilkesboro got hit with the loss of Fortune 50 headquarters Lowes Home Improvement Warehouse as well. Again, this would really help their area. If only the State would at least somewhat pitch a bid for North Wilkesboro. I know they don't have much of a chance, but they have nothing at all if no one backs their late effort.

Those I.M. Pei renderings for Charlotte are amazing! Much better than the little 7-storey office building he designed here in Asheville. This should give North Carolina an excellent example of the firm's work to show architecture fans!
 

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^ I didn't even realize North Wilkesboro had a bid. I thought only KC, Atlanta, Daytona, and Charlotte were invited, and Richmond kinda pushed their way into the equation. I could see a smaller town getting it, though. Cooperstown and Canton aren't exactly metropolises, ya know? Any details on this North Wilkesboro bid you speak of?
 

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I think it would be a mistake for NASCAR to choose the location based on attracting new fans. For instance, I hope they don't really think that putting the Hall in Atlanta will actually increase the exposure of the sport. Atlanta's entirely too large a city to bite on that kind of attraction; if anything, it will simply be lost among the many other tourist traps already established (Coke museum, the new aquarium, Underground Atlanta, etc.).

If Atl puts up a better bid and the finances make more sense there, then by all means they deserve to win the decision. But if this is being largely motivated by NASCAR's desire to expand their fan base, they will live to regret it. A Hall of Fame is for people who are already fans; no non-fan would go there just because it happens to be in their hometown.
 
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