Friday roundup: Cobb County still losing money on Braves, Beckham now wants two new stadiums, A’s reveal latest crazy rendering

It’s yet another morning to wake up and read the news and want to immediately go back to bed, or maybe get out of bed and protest something or just hug somebody. There’s a full week of additional stadium and arena news to recap, though, and that still matters, even if maybe not quite as much as man’s inhumanity to other humans, so:

  • Cobb County is still losing money on the new Atlanta Braves stadium, but it was at least down to $5.8 million last year from $8 million the year before. That’s mostly thanks to increased property tax payments from the development around the stadium, though, and as I’ve covered before, property taxes aren’t free money, they’re revenues that are supposed to pay for all the social costs of new development, so please everybody stop pretending that’s how fiscal math works.
  • David Beckham’s Inter Miami (do I have to keep identifying them that way? you bet I do!) now wants to play its first two MLS seasons, 2020 and 2021, at a new stadium in Fort Lauderdale while waiting for its Miami stadium to be ready. I admit to being somewhat confused as to how an 18,000-seat stadium can be built in Fort Lauderdale in less than a year (even if it’s just a temporary facility that will eventually be converted to host the franchise’s youth team) when it’ll take two years at least to build one in Miami, but mostly I’m just excited for Beckham to have two different stadium ideas that can run into inevitable obstacles because he’s Beckham.
  • The Oakland A’s dropped another new rendering of their proposed Howard Terminal stadium as part of their latest site plan, and mostly it’s notable for apparently being the only building left with its own electrical power after the apocalypse wipes out the rest of humanity, which should help ticket sales. Vaportecture fans will also be pleased to see that the gratuitous shipping cranes for unloading containers to nowhere have been moved to a different corner of the site, possibly for logistical reasons but more likely because the renderers thought they framed the image better there.
  • Tottenham Hotspur stadium update: Finally looks on target to open in early April, except for the small problem that players trying to take corner kicks will tumble backwards down a slope if they stand more than one foot from the ball.
  • Milwaukee-area residents will finally get to stop paying a sales-tax surcharge to pay off the Brewers‘ Miller Park next year, after 24 years of the 0.1% tax being in place. (The public will keep on paying for repairs to the stadium, but it’s already built up a reserve fund from sales tax payments for that purpose.) That’s certainly good news for Wisconsin residents who want to see their spending dollars go 0.1% farther, though even more so it will make it harder for anyone to try to use that tax stream to fund a replacement stadium for Miller Park, which the Brewers haven’t talked about but you know it’s just a matter of time.
  • The Oakland-Alameda Coliseum Authority is set to vote today on a new short-term lease for the Raiders, who would pay $7.4 million in rent for 2019 and $10.4 millon in rent for 2020 if necessary, plus $525,000 a year in rent for the team’s practice facility for up to three years after moving to Las Vegas. Plus, Oakland still gets to continue with its antitrust suit against the Raiders for leaving in the first place. I love happy endings!
  • Calgary city councillor Evan Woolly says instead of giving tax kickbacks to a new Flames arena, he wants to give tax breaks to all businesses across the city in an attempt to keep more of them in town. I’d definitely want to see his projected economic impact numbers before deciding if that would be worth it, but it certainly makes as much economic sense as giving money solely to a pro hockey team on the same logic.
  • “Planning experts” told the city of Saskatoon that it should kick off downtown revitalization efforts by building a new arena, because that’s the “biggest piece,” and, and, sorry, I’m looking for any actual reasons these experts gave, but not finding any. Though given that one is described as a “real estate sales specialist,” maybe their reasoning is not so mysterious after all.
  • The New York Islanders management emailed season ticket holders to ask them to sign a “Support New York Islanders New Home at Belmont” petition, which leads me to think that maybe they’re taking this whole local elected official opposition thing more seriously than they’re pretending when they keep saying don’t worry, they’re totally going to have the place open by 2021.
  • The Carolina Panthers are talking about moving to South Carolina, but only their offices and practice field, not their actual home stadium. Not that that’s stopping them from trying to get out of paying their stadium property tax bill.
  • The government is Sydney is rushing to demolish a 31-year-old Australian football rugby (sorry, read too quickly and can’t tell all the Australian ball sports apart really anyway) stadium nine days before a new government might come in that would have preserved the building, and while I don’t fully understand the whole history here, you can read about it here while we wait for FoS’s Aussie sports correspondent David Dyte to chime in.
  • Emails obtained by the Los Angeles Times reveal that Irving Azoff tried to talk the Los Angeles Lakers into moving out of the Staples Center and into the MSG-owned Forum, but talks didn’t go anywhere. This honestly doesn’t seem like much since it was just an emailed offer that was rebuffed, but it is interesting in that it shows how the arena management wars are playing into sports team decisions. (And also in that it reveals that Lakers owner Jeanie Buss refers to Clippers owner Steve Ballmer as “Ballz.”)
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18 comments on “Friday roundup: Cobb County still losing money on Braves, Beckham now wants two new stadiums, A’s reveal latest crazy rendering

  1. You meant JEANNIE Buss, not Jerry unless Jerry is making fun of Ballmer from the grave :)

  2. The doomed stadium in Sydney is (mostly) a rugby league venue that’s hosted an occasional soccer match.

    From what I gather, people are more upset about the demolition being used as an expensive and unnecessary political issue than they are about that stadium going away. The plan, at least if it’s destroyed, is to build a replacement venue on the same land.

    In the meantime, there are approximately two bazillion rectangular sport stadiums in metro Sydney, so it won’t dramatically impact sport.

    1. Thanks — I saw “football” mentioned and assumed it meant football and not futbol or rugby. Will clarify.

  3. The Oakland A’s lease is approved.

    (BTW – you forgot a closing tag for the strike-outs.)

    1. You only need a tag on a strikeout if the third strike is dropped.

      (Broken tag fixed, thanks!)

    2. But all that Reno, Henderson, San Antonio, Giant’s baseball stadium speculation was all we going for us this off season. Raiders are such buzz kills.

  4. Unless the Tottenham field…sorry…pitch is already drawn to the absolute minimum allowable dimensions, seems like it wouldn’t be too difficult to redraw a foot or two narrower and/or shorter.

    1. That’d be an interesting debate. The Premier League has an optimal size on the books (105 x 68 meters) for use in all cases except where the stadium does not allow for it. Certainly that stipulation was for grandfathering in older stadiums and not intended to cover huge “oopsies” on brand new stadiums.

  5. “Qauy” and “Warf” – things that get built when your architectural-rendering-person can’t afford a spell checker.

  6. For the A’s pictures – they have one of a community outreach meeting. It would have been more effective if the woman didn’t have a WTF look on her face.

  7. As I’m mostly following crane locations, I’ll note that the cranes are in one location on page 2 and another on page 12. To be fair I’m not sure page 12 is different than the old vaportecture rendering.

    I must admit I find page 9 the most amusing. There are 5 key points. One is “uniquely Oakland” and at least 3 of the other 4 involve pictures of ballparks in other cities (I admit I can’t place the image on the far right).

    1. Pretty sure the far right image is Bryant Park in midtown Manhattan. Not really sure why unless the A’s are planning on building a library instead of a stadium, but there you go.

      1. The Rockefellers would never allow it.

        In fairness, they did build some really nice bathrooms in the park and clean it up, so…

  8. On the Beckham stadium, apparently he wants to temporarily play in ft Lauderdales city-owned Lockhart stadium.

    It is slated for renovation, and as far as I can tell he wants some say in its design.

    It has hosted several soccer clubs over the years, so it’s “an” option I guess.

    1. I’m still crushed that the they didn’t select the name Bayern Miami instead of Inter. I can’t tell you how much this hurts.

  9. The Davit crane is clearly the next revolution in high end stadium amenities and the A’s will be the first to bring it to market.

    Billionaire baseball fans should not have to leave the comfort of their megayacht just to watch the game live. So, instead of a lengthy and well appointed private corridor leading from a secure private gate (featuring manuka honey infused luxury hand towels) to an equally well secured private lounge in the stadium, the A’s are just going to lift the fan’s yacht into a better viewing position.

    For those of you purchasing the cheap seats directly in land from the crane site, you may want to take rain gear to all games. You never know when the well heeled yacht owner’s crew might decide it’s time to empty the holding tanks.

    1. Brilliant! Now suddenly that whole Angels-to-Long Beach story makes sense. Sure the site is probably too small for a baseball stadium and is poorly situated for the fan base but that assumed they were commuting by car. If, in contrast, you consider putting a stadium in the best possible location to have an industrial crane lift yachts coming in from Huntington Beach directly into a stadium, the Long Beach waterfront is the clear winner.

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