Friday roundup: Panthers owner donated to Charlotte officials during stadium lobbying, St. Louis MLS didn’t need $30m in state money after all, and what time the Super Bowl economic impact rationalizations start

Happy Friday, and try not to think about how much you’re contributing to climate change by reading this on whatever electronic device you’re using. Though at least reading this in text doesn’t require a giant server farm like watching a video about stadiums would — “Streaming one hour of Netflix a week requires more electricity, annually, than the yearly output of two new refrigerators” is one of the more alarming sentences I’ve read ever — so maybe it counts as harm reduction? I almost linked to an amusing video clip to deliver my punchline, wouldn’t that have been ironic!

And now, the news:


12 comments on “Friday roundup: Panthers owner donated to Charlotte officials during stadium lobbying, St. Louis MLS didn’t need $30m in state money after all, and what time the Super Bowl economic impact rationalizations start

  1. Hmmm. Well, there’s this…

    “…The release of the renderings come at a time when MLB has identified the (Beloit) Snappers as a candidate for contraction after the 2020 season. The team sale to Studer still has not been finalized, and the press release from Hendricks Commercial Properties did not address the many issues associated with contraction and the future of the team, let alone zoning issues and an environmental impact study on the site, which has a history of industrial uses that include a manufacturing gas plant and a sewer treatment facility…”

    Seems perfect for that ‘kids play area’.

    I didn’t see any info on what the proposed 3,500 seat stadium for a soon to be extinct team in a midwest town of just under 40,000 would cost, or how much parkland (something we are told Beloit is famous for) would be plowed under for the facility’s 7 acre footprint, but sure. Why not?

    If there’s one thing you can’t put a price on, it’s a swanky new facility for a minor league baseball team that MLB has already declared should not exist.

    The main entrance being in centrefield is also interesting. Hands up everyone who immediately thought of the pictures of the early 1900s world series at the Huntingdon Grounds with fans arranged in an arc around the infield…

    • The Snappers weren’t on the initial contraction list:

      http://www.fieldofschemes.com/2019/11/18/15466/mlbs-minor-league-hit-list-would-kill-42-teams-that-cities-spent-hundreds-of-millions-on-stadiums-for/

      Looks like Baseball Digest had a slightly different list:

      https://ballparkdigest.com/2019/11/18/more-details-emerge-on-mlbs-assault-on-hometown-baseball/

      • Looks like I have a spreadsheet to modify today.

        MiLB contraction. The gift that keeps on giving!

      • Thanks Neil. Isn’t it great to know that three card monty and 42 franchise monty works exactly the same?

        Agree with you on the architectural drawings… the design actually does look nice… though I’ll never know why every small town stadium needs to have walls and a facade that makes it look like it could accommodate a world series crowd of Dodger fans in 1955…

        While the town may grow and fan support increase to the point where capacity has to be increased beyond 3500 (very unlikely, but I wouldn’t call it impossible), it is difficult to see how it would quadruple or quintuple in the 50 years or so this stadium might remain standing.

    • “…an environmental impact study on the site, which has a history of industrial uses that include a manufacturing gas plant and a sewer treatment facility…”

      Hmmm. When I read that, the late Jim Bouton’s “Foul Ball” comes to mind. The intro to that book alone should be required reading for anyone who follows this site because it dovetails perfectly with FoS’s purpose. Everything that follows is a textbook example for what happens when pols, power brokers and local media conspire to foist an unneeded publicly-funded sports facility on taxpayers, even when private interests (i.e., Bouton and partner Chip Elitzer) are willing to renovate a historic ballpark in Pittsfield, MA and bring in an independent team WITH THEIR OWN MONEY. Local citizens overwhelmingly supported Bouton’s proposal but we all know what politicians think about the electorate.

      Be aware that there are two versions of “Foul Ball,” a 2003 printing that Bouton had to self-publish after his original publishing house got scared off (I’m guessing by GE lawyers for reasons you’ll learn as you read it) and a 2005 printing with a Part II detailing what happened after the first version was released. I know you don’t want your site used to plug books, Neil, and will have no hard feelings if you scrub this post for that reason. I just think “Foul Ball” stands as Exhibit A for why a site like FoS is NEEDED for similar reasons why consumers needed Ralph Nader.

  2. Re Howard Terminal stadium: “there could be just one more vote by the city council before construction begins.”

    Yeah, they are extremely wrong about that: https://newballpark.org/2020/01/22/build-it-now/
    (see diagram at bottom)

  3. This could be another (small) step forward for Mr LeBlanc and company

    https://www.nsbuzz.ca/life/land-purchased-for-halifaxs-cfl-stadium/

    • Hmmn. Don’t news stories from reputable outlets have actual bylines rather than anonymous attribution?

      Would you happen to know who runs that site or whether it does any actual research or reporting?

      • The immediately previous article is “Will Elon Musk Solve Nova Scotia’s Internet Woes?” Clearly the question marks do a lot of work at Nova Scotia Buzz.

  4. Say what you will about the name Trash Pandas but at least the logic is wholesome.

    “Our area is known for engineering and raccoons are just as smart to the point they can build rocket ships out of trash cans.”

    Plus the alternative names sounded much stupider.

    Happy Friday to ya.