Thursday, June 4, 2009

Demolish Memorial Stadium and move planned baseball park

Posted By on Thu, Jun 4, 2009 at 1:38 PM

When there's an obvious solution to two problems at once,it's often too obvious for local bureaucratic powers-that-be to notice, but let's point it out nonetheless, OK?

Problem 1: The plan for a baseball stadium downtown has hit snag after snag, and although it's a popular idea, God only knows when the planned stadium in Third Ward will be built, if ever.

Problem 2: Memorial Stadium, which is parked on land owned by the county, is a dangerously unsafe relic. According to the daily paper's Web site, a new Park and Rec. Dept. engineering report says three bleacher sections at Memorial Stadium should stay closed; several rows of seats at the venue have already collapsed; and now a sinkhole is reportedly forming at one of the entrances.

Solution to both problems: Tear down what's left of rickety Memorial Stadium and build a new baseball park there. It's county land, so business interestes won't be bickering in court over who gets what in the deal (which has been the case in the complex deal that was to ostensibly bring a baseball park downtown), and some of the revenue from the games could eventually go to Park and Rec., thus relieving budget shortfalls. Another advantage to building the baseball stadium at the current Memorial site is that the city could fulfill its original plan to have a large, "for-real park" downtown, a plan that was changed to accommodate the complex deal that has stalled.

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