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Volume 24 No. 156
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Facility Notes

In DC, Jeff Maurer wrote MLS club DC United's Buzzard Point stadium proposal "feels different because the mayor's office is heavily involved." This is Mayor Vincent Gray "identifying an economic development project to put on his resume as the next election approaches." Gray looks "foolish if this doesn't happen." He is "obviously betting that this will happen." Buzzard Point currently "seems to be a gravel pit next to a weed-growing facility," so this is "not exactly a historic neighborhood." But DC United "can't make money in RFK Stadium." As "long as that's true, we can expect to have teams cobbled together from the discount bin like this year's abomination" (, 7/30).

PEACH PIT: In Atlanta, Jeff Schultz noted the Falcons now are seeking to build their new stadium on the site north of the current Georgia Dome because the south site "is no longer feasible." But many team officials "prefer the south site because it makes more sense for redevelopment." Schultz wrote, "Regardless of whether you believe redevelopment will actually take place as a result of stadium construction, the north property seems far less likely to spur that kind of area development than the south property." Neighborhoods north of the Georgia Dome have "seemed resistant to a new stadium being put there because of traffic and noise concerns, while doubting they’ll see any benefit from the construction." Schultz: "Either way, this isn’t shaping up as a great public relations venture for [Owner Arthur Blank], who certainly had hoped to avoid such obstacles" (, 7/30).

WHERE DREAMS COME TRUE: On Long Island, Laura Figueroa notes Forest City Ratner Cos. "has amended its proposal" for Nassau Coliseum to say that it will "hire the Disney Institute to train all arena employees in customer service." Forest City "contracted with the Disney Institute, a professional development arm of the Walt Disney Company, to train some 2,000 employees at" Barclays Center when it opened last year (NEWSDAY, 7/31).

GROUND CONTROL: In Chicago, Kathy Bergen notes McCormick Place officials have "filed a lawsuit seeking to gain control of a Lakeside Bank property needed for the development" of a DePaul Univ. arena and an adjacent 500-room hotel. The Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, or McPier, filed a "'quick-take' eminent domain lawsuit Monday in Cook County Circuit Court." Such lawsuits allow a government to "take immediate possession of a property if the court finds there is adequate public use" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 7/31).