Jacksonville Jaguars president Mark Lamping declared that the team’s stadium is “a candidate for major renovations,” which led Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry to respond with this remarkable statement: “I am not the expert on entertainment and sports stadiums, so whatever the organization thinks is going to be best for that district — for fans and best for taxpayers.” That’s not exactly grammatical English, but it seems to imply I don’t know nothing ’bout no sports stadiums, these guys are the experts so I guess let’s give them what they want, which is incredible even on the very low bar set by American mayors.
Wondering how the Golden State Warriors owners are going to pay back the cost of their $1 billion San Francisco arena opening in the fall? How about luxury suites that rent for $2 million a year? That’s $50,000 to watch a single Warriors game with a bunch of your friends, plus a “video wall” so you can watch the game on TV if you don’t want to look at the actual court, and a butler to bring you wine from your personal wine cellar during the game. In case you were wondering: Yes, rich people in the U.S. are officially too rich now.
David Beckham and Jorge Mas’s Inter Miami has hired Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez’s son as a lobbyist for their Melreese Park stadium project, but says since his dad is the county mayor and he’ll only be lobbying the city, this isn’t a conflict of interest at all. (Write your own Florida Man headlines.)
New rugby stadium opening in Houston! I bet the roller derby and ultimate frisbee leagues are wondering when it’s going to be their turn to get buildings designed just for their sports. (Over/under at this rate: 2025, right after the opening of the first Minecraft stadium.)
Did I mention the Yahoo Finance article yet that compares the Amazon HQ2 chase to the competition to host the Super Bowl, and cites me saying that while Amazon will bring more jobs, “that said, there’s almost no way it’s worth the kind of money that cities are talking about”? Well, now I have, enjoy!
AL.com has recalculated the public costs of a proposed University of Alabama-Birmingham football stadium and come up with a total of $18.2 million a year — $10.7 million from a bunch of county taxes, $3.5 million from a new car rental tax surcharge, $1 million from other county funds, and $3 million from city funds — not the $15.7 million I had previously reported. UAB and a naming rights sponsor and other private contributors, meanwhile, would only put in $4 million a year, and only for the first ten years. Out of his goddamn mind, I tell you.
Norman Oder of Atlantic Yards Report filed a Freedom of Information Law request to see the competing bids for the Belmont Park site that eventually got awarded to the New York Islanders, and was shot down on the grounds that it would “impair present or imminent contract awards.” Wait, wasn’t the contract already awarded? Will it be okay to ask again once it’s too late to do anything about it?
A New Orleans Pelicans game was delayed because the arena roof leaked. No one is demanding that a new arena be built just yet that I’ve heard, but given that the current one is 19 whole years old, it’s gotta to be a matter of time, even if this one does have a fire fountain.
If you enjoy this site but were thinking, “Wouldn’t this be better as a YouTube video with lots of animated charts?”, Vox has got you covered.
The Houston city council has approved spending $3.2 million in tax dollars on a pro rugby stadium for the Houston SaberCats, who are a pro rugby team that is going to play in a pro rugby league, which councilmember Jack Christie calls “a beautiful example of public-private partnerships that we ought to look at in the future, because as far as I have heard, there’s not been one city tax dollar used for this development.” I’m done. Have a good weekend.