Thursday, May 21, 2015

Downtown Arena?

The city paid consultants $39,000 to study the feasibility of a downtown arena. I could have told them that it wasn't feasible for free. Maybe if I charged more, city officials might listen.

 A downtown arena was proposed in 2000. The proposal died a deserved, horrible death when officials admitted that the Coliseum would be demolished if the Komets moved downtown. Regular readers of this blog already know my stance on local government subsidizing the entertainment industry. But broader public support is going to depend on several key questions.

1. Will the Komets move to the new arena?
2. If they do move, will Memorial Coliseum share the same fate as Memorial Field? My guess is that they will conduct a study to find alternate uses for the historic building designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. And it will stay open for a few years and operate at a huge loss to the county, and then it will get bulldozed anyway. So if you are emotionally attached to the Coliseum, you should be very concerned about the city building a competing sports venue.
3. If the Komets won't be moving, what is the point? Is some other minor league team with an idiotic name moving in? Or are there going to be concerts in this arena, just like at the Grand Wayne Center, the Embassy Theater, and the Coliseum? Is this city so jam-packed with concerts that they need another place to hold them all?

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