SBD/Issue 76/Facilities & Venues

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  • Rose Bowl Officials Finalizing Plans For $164M Renovation

    Proposed Renovation Of Rose Bowl Could 
    Boost Suite Capacity From 600 to 2,500
    Rose Bowl officials after Thursday’s BCS National Championship game will begin “completing plans and applying for bonds for a $164[M] renovation of the stadium,” according to Billy Witz of the N.Y. TIMES. The project, which would begin next January, “would be competed four years from now -- in time for the 100th Rose Bowl game and the return of the BCS title game.” The deadline to apply for federal stimulus funds, which the Rose Bowl “would be eligible for, is Dec. 31, 2010.” The city of Pasadena owns the stadium, and City Manager Michael Beck said, “The window of opportunity to make this work, really, is today. Two years ago, we couldn’t afford to do it. Two years from now, interest rates will be higher and construction costs are likely to be higher.” Witz reported Orioles VP/Planning & Development Janet Marie Smith developed a plan for the stadium that calls "for turning the clock back as well as forward." The scoreboard at the south end of the stadium "will be replaced by a 1940s replica, and at the north end, much of the signage will be stripped away and replaced by a high-definition video board." The bottom 10 rows "will be ripped out along the sidelines and replaced by the hedges that once enveloped the field." Aisles "will be added and tunnels widened, allowing for easier access," and concession areas "will be reconfigured to be more efficient." Perhaps the "most critical part of the renovation is the overhaul of the press box, which houses suites." It "would extend farther from the stadium, increasing the suite capacity from 600 to 2,500." According to preliminary estimates, "those suites, and other premium seating, would help generate $100[M] to pay off the bonds." Other revenue streams are "expected to come from advertising around the stadium and selective major events." There also will be an "effort to solicit philanthropic donors." Rose Bowl GM Darryl Dunn said, “The funding is the biggest challenge, no question about it. But what we’re doing is modest and incremental. The day you stop reinvesting is the day you start to lose it” (N.Y. TIMES, 1/1).

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  • Say Cheese: Kraft Agrees To Sponsor Implosion Of Texas Stadium

    Kraft Will Pay Irving A $75,000 Sponsorship
    Fee For Charities Prior To Stadium's Demolition
    The Irving (TX) City Council Thursday "unanimously approved Kraft Foods as the official sponsor" for the implosion of Texas Stadium, according to Wendy Hundley of the DALLAS MORNING NEWS. Kraft will pay Irving a $75,000 sponsorship fee "prior to the demolition for charities selected by the city." The company also will give $75,000 "worth of Kraft products for local charities of its choice." Irving Convention & Visitors Bureau Exec Dir Maura Gast indicated that Kraft this week "will launch a national essay contest for children" as part of its "Cheddar Explosion" promo campaign. The winner of the contest "will get to trigger the detonation at the public demolition." Irving Dir of Communications Laurie Kunke said that an official demolition date has not been set "because asbestos is still being removed from the stadium." However, Hundley reported the sponsorship deal "stipulates that the implosion must occur between March 14 and April 18 or the contract will terminate and Irving must refund the sponsorship fee." Kunke noted that the city council "is expected to set a date for the event at its Jan. 13 work session" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 1/1). Gast told the city council "that Kraft plans to spend $1[M] in marketing and advertising for the event" (FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 1/1).

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  • NFL Facility Notes: Jets Fans Encounter Long Lines Before Game

    Fans Say Scene Was Chaotic For
    Begnals-Jets Game At Giants Stadium
    In N.Y., Joe Lapointe notes fans entering Giants Stadium for yesterday's Bengals-Jets game encountered a "somewhat chaotic scene." It was the last regular-season football game to be held at the venue, and Jets fan Ernie Buonocore said that there were "not enough security personnel to handle the crowd." Buonocore: "They were funneling people in and they were lucky no one got trampled." Jets fan Corey Griffin said that it "took more than a half-hour to enter the stadium after he arrived at the gate." But NJSEA VP/Public Relations John Samerjan said that there was "'nothing unusual' in the crowd behavior and that anyone who thought so 'must have been people not used to going to football games'" (N.Y. TIMES, 1/4). The Jets' banned alcohol sales during last night's game, prompting New Jersey-based Majorska Vodka Company to "call for sports fans to boycott" Johnson & Johnson products for 24 hours. Jets Owner Woody Johnson is "an heir to the Johnson & Johnson fortune." Majorska said that the Jets' "one-game ban on alcohol could cost the company more than $100,000 in revenue" (N.Y. TIMES, 1/3).

    CLOSING IN ON A DEAL: Dolphins CEO Mike Dee yesterday said that he "expects a new name" for Land Shark Stadium to be "announced before the Jan. 31 Pro Bowl." Dee said the stadium "will be Land Shark Stadium through" Tuesday's Georgia Tech-Iowa FedEx Orange Bowl, and there "will be an announcement between the Orange Bowl and the Pro Bowl." In West Palm Beach, Brian Biggane notes the NFL "currently is referring to the stadium by its former name, Dolphin Stadium, when publicizing the Pro Bowl and the Feb. 7 Super Bowl" (PALM BEACH POST, 1/4).

    TIME RUNNING OUT: In St. Paul, Charley Walters wrote there is "virtually no chance of the faltering Vikings getting public approval for a new stadium in the coming" Minnesota state legislative session. If Vikings ownership "can't persuade QB Brett Favre to return next year, there would seem to be little chance in 2011, too, despite the expiration of their Metrodome lease after that season" (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 12/31).

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