Your copy of the Falcons stadium report can be found here

newstadium

From over in the world of sports, my AJC colleague Tim Tucker sends you a copy of the report that recommends the demolition of the Georgia Dome in favor of a new Falcons stadium, funded by a hotel-motel tax, perhaps in downtown Atlanta’s nearby Gulch.

It was released Thursday by the Georgia World Congress Center. Read it here.

The bottom line:

1. Modifications to the seating bowl, as necessitated by new program seating arrangements, results in seat quanities that do not achieve the desired game day or special event capacities.

2. Continued use of the venue through construction is not possible. Modifications will result, at a minimum, in two periods of closure for the facility — January 2014 to September 2014 and January 2015 to October 2015 – at best. This significantly affects both the Falcons season and GWCC events during these time periods.

3. There is not a compelling difference between the cost of reconstructing and expanding the Georgia Dome versus the cost of building a new facility; a point that is further magnified by the opportunity cost resulting from the loss of hosting Falcons games and other GWCC events. Also, the substantial cost risk of undertaking this complicated project, (which still would not meet the current NFL program requirements) narrows the cost differential even further.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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40 comments Add your comment

honested

April 26th, 2012
8:25 am

Why don’t they just take the stupid football team to a new city and save Atlantans a few hundred million?

Every other city in the United States has come to understand that using taxpayer funds to build sports arenas is a losing proposition for the funders (us).

Why does GA continue to suspend reality and ignore experience.

I thought the whole ‘free market thingy’ was supposed to suggest the rich pay for their own toys.

add14jazz

April 26th, 2012
8:28 am

At a time when this state could use additional revenues in SOOO many areas (we will NEVER get rid of traffic in metro Atlanta until people get out of their racist, selfish and non-progressive ways and get real about this state finally really funding REAL rail service in metro Atlanta) that are MUCH more important things than giving in to Blank and the NFL over a new stadium when there is very little wrong with the Dome! I’m a huge huge huge football fan and believe we need a team. But just because they want a shiny new toy?? NO!!!

Captain Pete

April 26th, 2012
8:29 am

Maybe they should just go to Birmingham – long-term economic benefit to that city – just like Delta coming to Atlanta years ago.

Aquagirl

April 26th, 2012
8:34 am

Take a good look Jawja—this billionaire’s stadium for millionaire players is brought to you by the Tea Potty/Republican legislature. And the dumb as a box of rocks voters who think they’re getting small gub’mint and less taxes.

jd

April 26th, 2012
8:38 am

Between the stadium and the port there will be no borrowing capacity left for the next two years to build roads or schools. Let the falcons build their own house.

Bob Loblaw

April 26th, 2012
8:46 am

Nobody likes 90 degree direct sunshine in your face while watching football in September. Hence, the Dome. It’s a new NFL, now. You gotta have that new stadium to keep up with the Joneses. We may as well build a retractable roof so we don’t have to burn up on warm days and get to enjoy the fall days outdoors.

Joe in Midtown

April 26th, 2012
9:04 am

Marlboro Man

April 26th, 2012
9:08 am

Looking good. Fix the roads next, some more mass transit and the city will be on the road to success.

Eli

April 26th, 2012
9:10 am

I, for one, am excited about this. The use of tax money is perfectly justified in this project and it is not as if my taxes are going up to pay the bills.

Sure, I would rather see this money go to something “value-added” like the school systems and university system. I know the state government is angry that none of its taxes incentives work and are resorting to the type of government spending reminiscent of the Stimulus. After all, when your ideology is driving the lowest job creation rates in the country what else can you do?

They could have framed this better. If they had a public relations campaign providing conservative talking points none of the right-wing would disagree with this project. The only thing they have to justify is why they are not spending this “money” elsewhere or using it to give state employees a cost of living adjustment for the first time in several years.

GULCH

April 26th, 2012
9:12 am

SAVE THE GULCH!

Birdman of Falcatraz

April 26th, 2012
9:13 am

Jim, how about an economic impact report that states how much money hosting a superbowl would bring to the city coffers, as without the new stadium that will never happen again here. Any chance the 300m would recouped by the city if that were to happen? Any jobs impact a new stadium might have versus the dome or is that neglible? Give us some numbers they are using to even justify this discussion.

Kococo Brothar

April 26th, 2012
9:16 am

Aquagirl must be a progressive Obama momma that brain flew the coop and Atlanta is majority black and the fool mayor, a idioit will, I repeat will press for the new stadium.

fulldawg

April 26th, 2012
9:18 am

The UGA Athletic Association pays for Sanford Stadium’s upgrades itself. Why can’t the poor Falcons pay for their own place?

td

April 26th, 2012
9:19 am

honested

April 26th, 2012
8:25 am

Why don’t they just take the stupid football team to a new city and save Atlantans a few hundred million?

That statement explains all we need to know about you. Football is second only to God in the south and you hate both so you will never be happy in the south. Why do you still live here again?

td

April 26th, 2012
9:21 am

You libs do understand that if it was not for the professional sports teams in Atlanta then no one would even know where Atlanta was?

yuzeyurbrane

April 26th, 2012
9:41 am

We now know which commentators have season tickets. And they are usually up there with the govt. is bad, free enterprise is good logo. Why do you have such contempt for the intelligence of those who make less money than you? Because you know they are willing to subsidize your toys because “football is second only to God in the South”.

Centrist

April 26th, 2012
9:51 am

Thank goodness for big HD TV that shows live action better than in person, with announcers explanations and statistics compared to the coming jump in ticket prices, parking, food & beverage, and traffic. Same for the Braves (although they are advertising a one third price reduction for food – assume attendance in the reason). Only Masters, tennis, and college sports is worth it to me to go in person – food and most beverages at the football tailgate. I can count on one hand how many times I’ve been to the Dome and Turner Field in the last 10 years (NEVER to a Hawks game – don’t watch them either).

Since I won’t be paying the hotel/motel tax, inflated ticket, parking, food/beverage prices – the payback will mostly on others.

Birdman of Falcatraz

April 26th, 2012
9:56 am

Those of you saying the ticket buyers are only the Richie Rich’s from the North end of the county have not been to a Falcons game. That is the one place where everyone in the building is an Atlantan and can come together regardless of race, income or political ideology. Unlike the Braves games that are truly dominated by one demographic, Falcons games which I attend frequently are a melting pot.

Shar

April 26th, 2012
10:06 am

I am so tired of endless taxpayer funding of this game. Middle and high school football stadii? Taxpayer funded and tax exempt. College stadii, big-donor tax-free special perks, endless “program” costs, all functioning as minor leagues for the inflated NFL? Taxpayer funded and tax exempt. Bigger, newer stadii for NFL teams to feel more special in? Taxpayer funded.

td, football may be popular in the South but it is a huge recipient of public welfare and couldn’t survive without it. It’s a game, not a necessity. Football needs to drastically downsize and fund itself without special treatment from the public purse, not build big shiny buildings in which to admire itself.

Aquagirl

April 26th, 2012
10:09 am

Since I won’t be paying the hotel/motel tax, inflated ticket, parking, food/beverage prices – the payback will mostly on others.

A higher hotel/motel tax discourages conventions, which are the backbone of Atlanta’s $11 billion hospitality industry. Fewer conventions = fewer jobs and money into our economy. Now, if you’re a parasite living on a government check, this doesn’t bother you much. For the rest of us, a depressed local economy is a problem.

But thanks for proving my point about dumb as a box of rocks Republican voters who don’t even understand they’re getting reamed. Sit in front of that HD tv and stay fat,dumb, and happy.

Cartwright

April 26th, 2012
10:13 am

Georgia’s “free market” = socialized costs, privatized profits (see: Georgia Power, Falcons)

honested

April 26th, 2012
10:18 am

td,

“if it was not for the professional sports teams in Atlanta then no one would even know where Atlanta was”

What a classic misunderstanding of value.

It could not have anything to do with either of the Medical Schools, Any of the major Law Schools, one of the Country’s premier Engineering Schools, just to name a few on the long list.

No what makes us important is grownups playing with sticks and balls or slamming each other to the ground.

I understand why evolution is so difficult to grasp for many of you.

Birdman of Falcatraz

April 26th, 2012
10:25 am

The value of sport and competition to our evolved society should not be underestimated. It has been a part of our lives as humans for as long as we have walked upright. In the big scheme of life and death is it equal in value to engineering, education and medical, no way. But make no mistake, our DNA is programmed to compete, now that we arent competing with lions and tigers and bears for scraps of food, that need for competition is fulfilled through sporting events.

Look before I leap...

April 26th, 2012
10:26 am

As a frequent traveler both domestic and abroad, Atlanta is far better known for its airport than its sports teams. It amazes me when I am over in Europe or the middle east, that when I talk to the locals they can name the Yankees or Lakers or Steelers or even Cowboys. A couple of folks could mention the Braves, no one knew who the Falcons were. Though two Saudis did remember Murder Bowl 2000.

@td: The only notoriety that Atlanta has in the world of American professional sports is its lackluster fan support and being a perennial also-ran in MLB.

DannyX

April 26th, 2012
10:29 am

I am getting sick of the class warfare. Get over it. Our rich people need this. Is it be too much to ask? A petty $300 million in taxpayer funds to give our Job Creators a place to watch 8 football games a year in the luxury they deserve? Its unthinkable that we would treat the Job Creators with such animosity. Why should they have to walk 250 ft to get to a bar? They have earned a bar located within 50 ft of their seats. The modern stadiums pamper the Job Creators, the Dome is an embarrassment.

Poor Arthur Blank after all he has done this is the way we treat him????? Yes the NFL just signed a humongous new tv contract and Blank is filthy rich but they EARNED their money and should not have to waste it on stadiums.

For God’s sake people we just built Philips Arena, half of the arena is luxury boxes!!! It makes no sense that the Georgia Dome is wasting so much space on the average fan, what kind of message does that send the Job Creators????? No wonder Atlanta has high unemployment. What Job Creator would want to move a business here??? The message is out, Job Creators know they will not be treated fairly here. No wonder businesses stopped moving here.

Mr Blank, please accept my most humble apology for all the miserable, selfish people that call this area home. I hope you get your blank check soon. At least our politicians are in touch with reality, they should be proud of the way they ignoring the jealous people.

Question Man

April 26th, 2012
10:29 am

Did the report discuss the basis for demolishing the Dome versus leaving it standing?

Mark

April 26th, 2012
10:31 am

td are you gay?

DJ

April 26th, 2012
10:32 am

I thought Arthur Blank was a Republican free-market capitalist. I thought Republican free-market capitalists want the government out of private business affairs as much as possible. So if you really want government out of private business affairs, DON’T TAKE THE GOVERNMENT MONEY. Seriously – it’s not that hard. Besides – I can think of a lot of ways to spend $300 million dollars that would actually invest in Atlanta’s future, instead of building something that…. wait for it…. WE ALREADY HAVE ONE OF.

And while we’re on that subject – has the construction industry so completely transformed itself in one short generation that it can only build stuff that lasts 20 years and then needs to be torn down and replaced? I’d say someone isn’t getting their money’s worth…..

Don't Tread

April 26th, 2012
10:35 am

I don’t have a dog in this fight, but Blank needs to fund his own stadium. (And no, I’m not a so-called “progressive”.) I haven’t attended a Falcons game since the early 70s, in the then-new Fulton County Stadium.

Those people sitting in the club seats at the 50 will be paying for the stadium. Won’t be me.

Look before I leap...

April 26th, 2012
10:36 am

When the Ga Dome can claim 2 consecutive years of sell-out crowds, then we can talk the about the need for a new stadium.

This proposal is about greed, not need. A new stadium provides for more premium priced luxury sky-boxes, which none of the hoi polloi are ever going to get to see the inside of.

The higher taxes on the hotel rooms are not going to help attract convention business which already face challenges since aside from a tour of CNN, The World of Coke, The Ga Aquarium and maybe a half day trip out to Stone Mountain Park, there just isn’t much to attract convention or tourists to Atlanta.

Look before I leap...

April 26th, 2012
10:37 am

@Mark

td is not gay, but he is often wrong.

captguitarman

April 26th, 2012
10:42 am

Blah, blah, blah. Let me know when we get to the part where Blank threatens to move the team to another city, and the mayor of the stalking horse city rolls out the red carpet and starts holidng press conferences while wearing a Falcons baseball cap. That’s when the real action will begin. And Atlantans, complain all you want, and use these blogs to vent about how really don’t need this (which we don’t), and how the money could be put to so much better use (which it could), why a remodel wouuld be just fine (which it would), and the irony that the last Super Bowl start here was delayed because of an ice storm (which it was), etc. But in the end it will all be for naught because the pro teams know they hold all the cards, and it is just a matter of time before they get the gazillions in public infrastructure subsidies that allow for the mega salaries (along with teh gazillions from the TV networks), and turn almost every dollar that comes in into pure profit. It’s klind of nostalgic to think about how they once built their own stadiums, and their salaries were terrific, but reasonable. Here’s a novel idea, how about some profit sharing, some upside for the taxpayers in this deal if things go as swimmingly as the new stadium huggers predict?? . . . . Yeah, I know. Never mind.

Centrist

April 26th, 2012
11:35 am

@ Look – I travel a lot internationally too, and the biggest reason those outside of our country don’t know who the Falcons are is because they don’t play the other kind of (boring) football we call soccer.

Know any other sport where you can’t use your arms and hands? Good grief! I guess NASCAR and shooting comes close where those “sports” uses only machines.

honested

April 26th, 2012
11:41 am

DannyX,

How quickly we forget.
arthur blank was instrumental in giving us shrub, the shrub years, the shrub depression, the Iraqi War of Choice and the Afghan Fiasco.
He has had his access to taxpayer funds and for me deserves not another penny!

Of course we could build it and artie gets a better deal from say Birmingham and he moves. Just ask folks in Phoenix how happy they are about paying for the empty hockey stadium.

Shar

April 26th, 2012
12:39 pm

@Birdman: “The value of sport and competition to our evolved society” should also not be overestimated. Nine hundred million dollars for a stadium when one already exists is a huge overestimation. If sport and competition is so important, try chess, or bridge, or jumping rope. There are limitless opportunities for sport and competition that do not require the kind of public investment that football demands.

Old Boy

April 26th, 2012
2:50 pm

Where can I see a list of congress members who voted for this?

tb

April 26th, 2012
5:35 pm

As a business owner I know ROI, and that is why I feel giving state benefits to privately held corporations is my right. Also, older people have more rights than younger people. Younger people are dumb. Especially if they don’t like football.

They are so dumb that they are going to pay more taxes to give me more entertainment.

John

April 26th, 2012
6:02 pm

I love the Falcons. I have been a fan my whole life. I know sports bring revenue to the city, but spending tax payer money on this right now is insane. Let the hotel tax go to paying for more cops and better public transportation. If Blank does this, I am done with games. If Reed backs this, I will campaign against him as hard as I can. This is a waste of money.

Edward Ruffin

April 27th, 2012
8:51 am

As far as I’m concerned, I agree with honested, take the Falcons and find a new city. The threats against the politicians who would spend tax money on this boondoggle sound good, but it won’t come to pass. Atlanta voters are not the sharpest knives in the drawer.

MARTA Rida

April 27th, 2012
9:19 am

NO to the new stadium. Upgrade the Dome, they have done it to the Superdome, Dolphins Stadium, Arrowhead Field, and Soldier Field. Tailgating is just fine at the Dome, the Under the Bridge tailgating is very unique to Atlanta. The people tailgating there are always welcoming to fans. Vine City does not need to be a sea of parking lots so people can tailgate 8 times a year.