SBD/18/Leagues Governing Bodies

ATLANTA SPORTS COUNCIL TO BID FOR U.S. TENNIS OPEN

     The Atlanta Sports Council is "taking a crack at luring" the
U.S. Open Tennis Championships away from New York, and has
already sent a proposal to the USTA to build its center in Stone
Mountain, GA.  The USTA has plans and a budget to renovate
Flushing Meadows, the current U.S. Open site.  In their proposal,
Atlanta officials estimated that a GA facility would cost about
$75M less than New York because of lower construction costs.  The
Atlanta proposal calls for using the 12,000-seat Olympics tennis
venue as part of the U.S. Tennis Center.  The 130 acres next to
the venue would be available to the USTA so it could construct a
stadium with a retractable roof.  Atlanta Chamber President
Gerald Bartels: "It's a long shot, but it would be really neat if
we got it."  John Niemeyer, speaking for the Southern Tennis
Association, believes Atlanta's chances are not good, because he
said the "old guard" would fight to keep the Open in New York.
Jimmy Connors: "Atlanta would love it and support it.  But ...
it's always been the 'U.S. Open in New York.'"  But the USTA is
also aware many players, especially the younger ones, do not like
New York because of the jet noise, traffic, expense and getting
in and out of Flushing Meadows (Saporta & Brice, ATLANTA
CONSTITUTION, 11/18).
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