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rusthebuss

Professional Sport Team/Arena

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If its going to happen it will be in Norfolk. Norfolk is further along with the light rail and development is really huge compared to whats happening on the pennisula. I'm not knocking the pennisula and also majority of the metro population is on the southside.

Norfolk is central to the metro as well.

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Well, I was waiting for someone to say exactly what you just said. Norfolk has tried a few times to attract a professional sports team to the area but has been very unsuccessful because it would mean that Norfolk Scope (the only place feasible for a professional sports team) would have to be extensively updated or just redeveloped. Norfolk so far has declined that idea because of the cost. Norfolk is pretty much at "build-out" and doesn't have many other choices. That's why I figured a city with more space would make more sense (Portsmouth and Newport News). Both cities are both in huge expansion, but Newport News is more accessible out of the two considering the rest of Virginia and not just the southside.

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I'm new urban planet and i just wanted to make a suggestion to everyone on here and see what the response would be...whether people would agree with me or not. I think hamptonroads is overdue for a professional sports arena. We are (for some reason) one of the few metro areas that don't have a professional sports team. I think within the next 5 years or so, hampton roads should look into developing a professional sport arena (indoor). In my opinion, newport news might be perfect for this because of our accessibility and our location amongst the rest of the metro area. This idea would bring jobs and much tourism to the area which of course means more of a tax base. The only problem I might see is whether or not the metro area would support a sports team. There are a couple of places in newport news that i think would fit the sports arena. One is Patrick Henry Commerce Center which is adjacent to the Newport News/Williamsburg Airport. The airport has been extremely successful and continues to expand while Jefferson Blvd. continues to expand as well. The second place that might be an idea is the Newport Crossing Shopping Center which is at the intersection of Oriana Road and Warwick Blvd. This shopping center is right next to a proposed light rail station. The center is already being planned for redevelopment. Putting a sports arena here would restrengthen the warwick blvd corrider and bring life back to the denbigh area. It would also open up Stoney Run Creek to the public which (unfortunately) is covered by the whole shopping center. Newport News has also wanted to open up the Old Warwick Courthouse (which has much history) by making a museum out of it. I think a museum would compliment the sports arena perfectly being that it would be right next to it. Another "pro" for putting an arena in this area would be that it would still be right around the corner from the airport and Jefferson Blvd. I would love to hear feedback on this idea and maybe make a proposal to this idea if it is well recieved. Thank you

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You have made 3 of the exact same posts in 3 different threads. I welcome you here but please confine it to one thread. I will leave this thread up but i'm going to delete the posts in the other 2 threads.

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Well, I was waiting for someone to say exactly what you just said. Norfolk has tried a few times to attract a professional sports team to the area but has been very unsuccessful because it would mean that Norfolk Scope (the only place feasible for a professional sports team) would have to be extensively updated or just redeveloped. Norfolk so far has declined that idea because of the cost. Norfolk is pretty much at "build-out" and doesn't have many other choices. That's why I figured a city with more space would make more sense (Portsmouth and Newport News). Both cities are both in huge expansion, but Newport News is more accessible out of the two considering the rest of Virginia and not just the southside.

Well Norfolk has plans to build a new arena. They just didn't have it budget this year due to the courthouse complex.

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Well, I was waiting for someone to say exactly what you just said. Norfolk has tried a few times to attract a professional sports team to the area but has been very unsuccessful because it would mean that Norfolk Scope (the only place feasible for a professional sports team) would have to be extensively updated or just redeveloped. Norfolk so far has declined that idea because of the cost. Norfolk is pretty much at "build-out" and doesn't have many other choices. That's why I figured a city with more space would make more sense (Portsmouth and Newport News). Both cities are both in huge expansion, but Newport News is more accessible out of the two considering the rest of Virginia and not just the southside.

Actually, Norfolk owns two sites earmarked for a new arena: one between Chrysler Hall and MacArthur Center and the other just west of Harbor Park. If the former gets developed into an arena, the latter will become condos. If the latter gets chosen, then the former will be a mixed-use site probably a tower or two. Like Rus said, Norfolk is maxed out in terms of funds. It needs the state to renew the arena/stadium funding mechanism and it needs a confirmed expansion/relocation team. Although a pre-emptive construction like the Ford Center in OKC and the New Orleans Arena would be nice, costs are too high now and those cities had the financial support of surrounding counties and their respective state.

As for NN being an ideal location, you'd alienate most of South Hampton Roads in favor of a few extra Richmond fans. If we're talking a football stadium, then you may be onto something as there are only 8 games on weekends. But a 41-game NBA season or 81-game MLB season will be supported by HR residents not Richmond ones. And the bulk of HR residents are on the Southside.

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You make a very good point. Of course I'm very biased to Newport News because I have lived here all my life. It would make more sense to put a closed arena in norfolk and maybe and open arena in newport news. My question still remains however...when are we going to get a professional sports team?

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You make a very good point. Of course I'm very biased to Newport News because I have lived here all my life. It would make more sense to put a closed arena in norfolk and maybe and open arena in newport news. My question still remains however...when are we going to get a professional sports team?

No earlier than 10 years from now. HR never runs out of competition for sport teams. And that competition has something that HR doesn't have, regional tax support. A 240,000 person city can't go it alone especially when it's still paying off bonds on a downtown mall, museum, and cruise ship terminal. And soon it will add a new courts complex, maybe a new jail, new central library, and LR. No other HR city is interested in pro sports except Norfolk. And unless Norfolk gets an expansion franchise or an owner willing to let his/her relocated team temporarily play in Harbor Park or Scope (i.e. a committment), no arena or stadium will get built. But without an arena or stadium, no league or team is willing to commit. It's gonna be awhile.

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You make a very good point. Of course I'm very biased to Newport News because I have lived here all my life. It would make more sense to put a closed arena in norfolk and maybe and open arena in newport news. My question still remains however...when are we going to get a professional sports team?

I've asked the same question. I don't know if we will ever get one. I think the only chance for us to get one would be the NBA. I don't see anymore NBA teams moving in the future. I think that my hope is dwendling away. :cry:

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I've asked the same question. I don't know if we will ever get one. I think the only chance for us to get one would be the NBA. I don't see anymore NBA teams moving in the future. I think that my hope is dwendling away. :cry:

The Sonics will be moving to OKC in the next couple of years. Financial problems in Seattle from a bad arena deal, no new arena despite Seahawks and Mariners getting new digs, Stern's threat to Seattle, and new OKC ownership all point to that end. Shinn would love to keep the Hornets in OKC but Stern is not going to hurt NO to help an owner that he doesn't like. But, NO will lose the Hornets by the end of the decade to either Vegas, KC, or San Diego. They have to keep them in the Western Conference and if Seattle moves to OKC then they can move to the Southwest Division with the former NO team going to the Northwest division in either Vegas or KC.

But as for HR, doesn't look like any Eastern teams will be moving so expansion is the only way and Stern seems more set on putting a team in Baltimore or Louisville with a complimentary Western team in San Diego.

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I used to be a big supporter of major league sports coming to Norfolk. The fact is that there just isnt enough corporate support here to make revenue for the team and area. It has nothing to do with population numbers. We wouldnt be able to fill the luxury boxes year after year, secure naming rights deals large enough for a market of this size, or even build an arena that meets the quality that major league teams seek.

On that last sentence...unless a billionaire, from Norfolk, is willing to throw down his own money on a team, we shouldnt support one using public tax money. Team after team in the majors has financing problems not even 15 years after a new arena is built. An out of towner like the old Charlotte 'Cornets' owner promiscuously floats around the country to find the best deal that suits his investment and WE would probably pay for a new arena, without the guarantee that a team would even stay in town 10-15 years from now. This does not even consider many small market areas that have teams but cannot successfully compete on the field, which translates into revenue problems that affect attendance and the fashionable 'urban-design-around-a-sports-venue' developments that occur around the country.

I LOVE Norfolk and hope to see it gain a team someday. But I definitely think the region is wise to keep Scope as it is now and wait until a local businessman has the capital and the drive to make it happen for our region, without placing all the risk on the taxpayers and cities.

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Like it was said early, Norfolk or for that matter HR will not get a team unless an arena get's built (which our best chance for a pro franchise is a NBA team). If the state could back us like other states do with cities in their state to help finance an arena, then all we need is naming rights and we proved we could get that, but until then we will just have to wait.

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Build an arena and they will come?? Aren't there other cities that tried this, and the pro sports team demanded a brand new arena over the new arena that was already built?

I don't think Hampton Roads has the community to support it. We have no local music on radio, no community TV. Voiceless man.

In terms of billionaires, you've got Dollar Tree, you've got Norfolk Southern, and you've got Landmark. Landmark stands to make money off of it.

If multiple cities supported it, that would help, but it isn't going to happen because no one wants to support their competitor.

Chesapeake had a chance at a NASCAR track I believe. That would have been a sport the locals would have been interested in, it would have brought money and national recognition, but they blew it.

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Huh? Norfolk Baseball Co. had the investors lined up for the 'Spos. Albert Abiouness may not have looked as much of a hitter at first glance, but he was and still is in the midst of selling his company for a hugh sum of money.

Corporate support isn't only the locally-based giants like Dollar Tree, NS, Landmark, Ferguson, and Smithfield but the companies with massive operations like BofA, Wachovia, Northrup Grumman, Stihl, General Dynamics, Cox, Verizon, Canon, Siemens, and the like. The military will also get in on it. Just look at Fleet Week in San Diego when the Pads wear camo unis.

The tax financing structure is there: hotel/meal taxes, income and business taxes related to the arena and team(s).

HR has local music on the radio, at least it used to. The Coast had Lo-cal snacks all the time. There's the local government channels on TV as well as Channel 11 for community TV. What else do you want?

The region has what it takes, but the leagues just don't think HR is sexy enough. OKC, Indy, Milwaukee, and Charlotte proved small towns can support the NBA. San Diego, Vegas, Baltimore, and Louisville look more appealing for just because their names are more recognizable.

The pre-emtive arena has worked. Look at NO and OKC. The only things are that you must land a team within 5 years of building it and that the arena must be expandable for additional seats and boxes. However, given Norfolk's size (i.e. budget and debt servicing ability) and high current construction costs, the opportunity to build an arena without a major tennat (and no the Admirals are not a major tennant) has passed for the time being. When the economy catches up with construciton costs and when Norfolk is able to pay down debt on recent projects, only then can it build a new arena.

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I just don't think the financing packages for major league teams are worth the money and risk to cities.

New Orleans Hornets- in two years the city will lose the Hornets because Shinn will not accept playing in the Superdome arena (my assumption)

New Orleans Saints- Just to keep the Saints in town, they had to basically subsidize the entire operation of the football team to keep them.

Seattle Supersonics- probably moving because the city is not willing to build a new arena, just a few years after they had to build a new baseball stadium to keep the Mariners.

Los Angeles Rams/Raiders- Left because the owners wanted a new stadium in place to operate the team....LOS ANGELES people! :wacko: ....

New Jersey Nets- suspected to be moving to Brooklyn even though the team has great attendance and a great team

Charlotte Hornets- after years of having the best attendance in the NBA, moved because Shinn and the city could not agree on building a new arena to replace one that wasn't even 20 years old.

Tampa Bay Devil Rays- (do I need to go there?)

NHL- (numerous examples)

What I am trying to get at is that each of these cities, some two or three times larger than our metro area have lost teams from a variety of factors, even if attendance was great. Does Hampton Roads really need to put their efforts and money into a sports arena when the owners get to make all the decisions on relocation?

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I just don't think the financing packages for major league teams are worth the money and risk to cities.

New Orleans Hornets- in two years the city will lose the Hornets because Shinn will not accept playing in the Superdome arena (my assumption)

New Orleans Saints- Just to keep the Saints in town, they had to basically subsidize the entire operation of the football team to keep them.

Seattle Supersonics- probably moving because the city is not willing to build a new arena, just a few years after they had to build a new baseball stadium to keep the Mariners.

Los Angeles Rams/Raiders- Left because the owners wanted a new stadium in place to operate the team....LOS ANGELES people! :wacko: ....

New Jersey Nets- suspected to be moving to Brooklyn even though the team has great attendance and a great team

Charlotte Hornets- after years of having the best attendance in the NBA, moved because Shinn and the city could not agree on building a new arena to replace one that wasn't even 20 years old.

Tampa Bay Devil Rays- (do I need to go there?)

NHL- (numerous examples)

What I am trying to get at is that each of these cities, some two or three times larger than our metro area have lost teams from a variety of factors, even if attendance was great. Does Hampton Roads really need to put their efforts and money into a sports arena when the owners get to make all the decisions on relocation?

yes they do! No one talks about how it opens the market for advertising to bring new business to the area. People are just looking at the negative aspects.

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there's actually a link between a pro-sports team and attracting new businesses to an area?? Many areas lack major league teams, yet still have no problem luring businesses. I'm sure HR is the same.

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there's actually a link between a pro-sports team and attracting new businesses to an area?? Many areas lack major league teams, yet still have no problem luring businesses. I'm sure HR is the same.

Any company that doesnt plan on filing Chapter 11 has probably already done market studies on regions/cities/states they might plan to expand to. A pro sports team does nothing for our area except possibly bumping up tourism, which I do not think justifies the cost.

Although, with the transient military population here, Norfolk jerseys could possibly spread across the country if we were to ever garner a superstar here, boosting tourism more and giving free marketing. The inner-city community involvement of pro sports teams is also a big asset.

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there's actually a link between a pro-sports team and attracting new businesses to an area?? Many areas lack major league teams, yet still have no problem luring businesses. I'm sure HR is the same.

It's called advertising your city. There are benefits.

Especially with a city that is having trouble being looked at nationally.

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It's called advertising your city. There are benefits.

Especially with a city that is having trouble being looked at nationally.

Completely debunked by numerous studies. The Cato Institute said:

"After accounting for all the other factors that economic theory suggests will affect income and growth, the presence of professional sports has, in the best case scenario, no effect on economic growth. In the most likely scenario, professional sports actually reduce income per person and they have no effect on overall economic growth in a metropolitan area."

All this will accomplish is to get Norfolk into the bidding wars that have enriched pro sports owners. For instance, in Tampa, Hillsborough County is paying $310 million of Raymond James Stadium's principal and interest with a special half-cent sales tax over 30 years. Thanks to that stadium deal, the team's value rose from about $192 million (pre stadium) to $500 million. Owners are now rewarded, not for putting a good product on the field, but for convincing tax payers to assume their costs. A modern version of bread and circuses -- except that the circus isn't free!

Huge loser. No credible evidence to the contrary.

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The Cato Institute is only one side to the debate. Its view, though, is expected considering its political ideology which is one that is against all forms of subsidy whether it be to companies or individuals.

Here's their mission statement from their site (link):

Cato's Mission

The Cato Institute seeks to broaden the parameters of public policy debate to allow consideration of the traditional American principles of limited government, individual liberty, free markets and peace. Toward that goal, the Institute strives to achieve greater involvement of the intelligent, concerned lay public in questions of policy and the proper role of government.

I am against the use of raising sales or income taxes or the diversion of existing tax revenue to fund an arena or stadium. However, "but for" taxes are open game. Using money generated at the facility and by employees of the facility (including the millions earned by the players of both the home and visiting teams) would be the fund a third of the cost. A naming-rights deal would fund the other third. The final portion would come from increased hotel (read: non-local) taxes and the possible raising of meal taxes by 0.5-1%.

A pro team would give the area a sense of identity and legitimacy which cannot be monetarily valued. It would provide the same ego-boost that Charlotte and Jacksonville received when they landed pro teams. Just look at how OKC is reacting to having the Hornets and the likely move of the Sonics to that city.

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The Cato Institute is only one side to the debate. Its view, though, is expected considering its political ideology which is one that is against all forms of subsidy whether it be to companies or individuals.

So when you can't refute the argument, then question the motives of the researcher?

Try the same shallow tactic on two economics professors from UMBC:

Local political and community leaders and the owners of professional sports teams frequently claim that professional sports facilities and franchises are important engines of economic development in urban areas. These structures and teams allegedly contribute millions of dollars of net new spending annually and create hundreds of new jobs, and provide justification for hundreds of millions of dollars of public subsidies for the construction of many new professional sports facilities in the United Sates over the past decade. Despite these claims, economists have found no evidence of positive economic impact of professional sports teams and facilities on urban economies.

You want a community "ego boost"? How about one that comes from a transportation system that works and is adequately funded? How about inner city school systems that give students an education that matches those in suburban districts? If there is taxing capacity of any type, then that is where the funding needs to go, not to enrich team owners as academic study after study has proven.

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If pro sports likely degrade the local economy as the Cato Institute claims, then why do cities chase after them? Again I go back to my argument that it provides a sense of worth and pride in your region. Here are your representatives on the national stage. Thanks to Iverson, Vick, Wright, Upton, and Zimmerman people are hearing about the Tidewater area. Imagine if there was a team with a recognizable figure or a star. That is an ambassador. Yes, it's sad that HR's community leaders are not recognized by Bob and Sue in Tulsa, but that is life.

HR's inner city schools are not bad like Baltimore, DC, or even Richmond's. They are not dangerous and most are accredited. Education rankings are not easily solved by money. It takes dedicated parents and mentors in the community to push the youth to achieve rather than choose the easy paths in life.

And when did transportation provide an ego-boost to anyone? If transportation was such a big problem in HR, the half-cent sales tax increase would've passed. Which brings us back to taxes. An arena would be funded by taxes and fees generated by the arena and its employees/tenants. Without it, this revenue stream would not exist. You can't tax something that doesn't exist.

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Ha Ha. If you think the schools in inner city Norfolk, Portsmouth, Newport News and Hampton are bad because of a lack of funding, you haven't lived in this area too long. Not having a decent pro arena is one of this area's biggest black eyes, and I am afraid Norfolk has too much of its credit tied up to build one. Every year that passes buy, the more expensive it gets.

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If pro sports likely degrade the local economy as the Cato Institute claims, then why do cities chase after them?

First, as much as you would like to change the question, every peer-reviewed academic study of the subject says there is no economic benefit to pro sports teams -- not just the Cato Institute. This article was in Friday's VP (sorry, can't link to it!):

Taxpayers are finally catching on. Professional sports is a big-time business. But rich owners don

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