What's wrong with our stadium? Nothing

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I would like to take issue with the Augusta GreenJackets' general manager regarding the perceived need for a new baseball park.

Lake Olmstead Stadium gives us plenty of room for the crowds at games. It offers free parking, and it's more convenient for more people. I've been to the ballparks in Savannah, Columbus, Macon, Lawrenceville, Greenville, S.C., Asheville, N.C., and Knoxville, Tenn. I'd choose Lake Olmstead over any.

Maybe GreenJackets GM Nick Brown should seek a transfer from his job if he dislikes the current stadium in Augusta.

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Craig Spinks
817
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Craig Spinks 07/08/11 - 04:06 am
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0
Let Cal, Jacoby, Billy and

Let Cal, Jacoby, Billy and Paul put their money where their mouths and mouthpieces are.

Brad Owens
4727
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Brad Owens 07/08/11 - 05:03 am
0
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Excellent letter and 100%

Excellent letter and 100% correct.

Lake Olmstead Stadium always gets reviews like this. ALWAYS.

blues550
380
Points
blues550 07/08/11 - 06:58 am
0
0
I am a supporter of the
Unpublished

I am a supporter of the downtown stadium because of the possibilities it represents for the development of our city center. Downtown Augusta already is a great place and the stadium would certainly enhance that.

I also agree that Lake Olmstead is a great place to go with all the conveniences plus outstanding sight lines for fans.

However, remarks by the Ripken group threatening to leave town have been childish and quite frankly stupid. And I plain dislike those tactics. They have a cash cow at Lake Olmstead - unbelievable lease, their own concessions. In return they have blessed us with ridiculous concession proicing and an on-field product that is pitiful.

Since coming to Augusta in 1997 we have spent many wonderful nights watching Greenjackets baseball. This season I've been just once. Ripken et al and their attitude are the sole reason.

My suggest to them comes from that great Southern philosopher Lewis Grizzard. Delta is ready when you are.

Brad Owens
4727
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Brad Owens 07/08/11 - 09:35 am
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blues550, I support downtown

blues550,

I support downtown development too, but can you imagine what we could do if we spent $40,000,000.00 on downtown itself?

We could do a whole list of amazing things that would bring much more steady business for many years to come instead of one big thing that might help some folks but not all.

Give me $40mil and see what I do with it,

Brad

TrukinRanger
1748
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TrukinRanger 07/08/11 - 09:58 am
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With $40m we could extend the
Unpublished

With $40m we could extend the Golf & "Gardens" wall around downtown.... OR.. put a police substation ON Riverwalk and actually have officers THERE!! One park I went to in Columbia has police emergency call boxes located throughout the park. Safety has to be addressed for downtown Augusta to get better. I'm tired of the thugs, beggars, thieves. It's sad because there is soooo much potential for downtown. The Savannah River is an awesome resource that is not being utilized to it's full potential. I wish the Dekester would get his merry band of men to hold hands around downtown and pray for a mayor that has the guts to say no to Ripken.

Emerydan
10
Points
Emerydan 07/08/11 - 11:41 am
0
0
If people support this

If people support this downtown stadium idea based on the notion that it will revitalize downtown, then they are buying into a myth. There is no evidence that shows sports stadiums have any significant economic impact on their immediate surroundings. Just take Turner Field for example, the area around it isn't exactly bustling with cafes, pubs and boutiques now, is it? There have been numerous studies that have disproven the claims by big stadium supporters that these projects are economic boons. They simply are not. Brad is right, there are lots of things that could be done to improve downtown and encourage revitalization efforts, but building a ballpark is not one of them. But what ends up always happening is that millions and millions in public dollars are wasted on pipe dreams with no track record of success at the expense of worthy projects that go neglected year after year.

jleyes
24
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jleyes 07/08/11 - 12:07 pm
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Emerydan- see Dayton,OH-

Emerydan- see Dayton,OH- exhibit A. That's for starters. Just thought I'd debunk your theory.

Emerydan
10
Points
Emerydan 07/08/11 - 12:37 pm
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And what other things has

And what other things has Dayton been doing to improve their downtown? So you're saying it's all attributed to a stadium? Sorry don't buy it. Same with Greenville and Chattanooga.. those cities had already done many other things that helped improve their downtowns such as greater police presence, favorable tax climate for downtown businesses, intimate street scaping creating inviting public spaces, performing arts centers, parking, and reliable and convenient public transportation that makes it possible for people to live and function downtown without necessarily having a car.

Brad Owens
4727
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Brad Owens 07/08/11 - 12:38 pm
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jleyes, Anyone can find the

jleyes,

Anyone can find the exception to the rule in anything. jleyes, why don't you show us ten areas out of the thousands of cities that it has worked in.

And YOU post the data please.

By the way, the best way to help downtown is not a stadium. If there were $40mil spent on repairing all the parks, streets, sidewalks, riverwalk, and building our own greenway project, it would do much more over many years to help all of downtown.

But I don't want to spend $40mil on that either.

We can't, we don't have the money. The TEE soaked up all the cash out there for 50 years to spend on things to develope tourism.

I am against it because TEE was shoved down our throats and because of the $100,000,000.00 price tag, 4 times the original amount we voted on.

We don't need this, it will not deliver any return on the investment, and we can't afford it.

Brad

Emerydan
10
Points
Emerydan 07/08/11 - 12:47 pm
0
0
Jlreyes: Are you talking

Jlreyes: Are you talking about the "proposed" baseball village development in Dayton, Ohio? The $230 million project that has been put on indefinite hold because of the financial situation in the country? Not sure I would want to point to that as a success story. But there is a big difference with it.. #1 it seems to have much more private sector backing than this downtown ballpark stadium proposal #2 It includes far more than a ballpark..with condos, apartments, restaurants, and even a Casino and hotel planned. (I can see a development such as that drawing people in from outside that local area). I've noticed that all mention of condos and retail have been dropped from the talking points of the people touting the stadium here.. simply referring to it as a "multi-purpose" stadium now.

Taylor B
5
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Taylor B 07/08/11 - 01:03 pm
0
0
Multi purpose, yep. Hobo

Multi purpose, yep. Hobo urinal with occasional ball game.

Brad Owens
4727
Points
Brad Owens 07/08/11 - 01:15 pm
0
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Muliti-purpose? Purpose #1,

Muliti-purpose?

Purpose #1, To make already rich and unethical developers even more rich from our tax dollars through even more rewards for unethical practices (P.S. misleading the public on the benefits of a white elephant like an unneeded stadium is unethical)

Purpose #2, Deke "Ironman" Copenhaver, The Mandate Mayor, needs a legacy project to call his very own.

Purpose #3, tie up every possible bit of bonded debt we can hold before the whites lose the six vote majority in the elections next year. debt IS slavery, so these huge projects that soak up revenues for generations is a neat way to be sure the revenues will continue to flow to the cabal long after the power has passed form their hands.

Purpose #4, make Ripken baseball more money

Purpose #5, keep this property off the tax book while helping private business make money with it.

Purpose #7, improve the values of already rich large land owners downtown by making their property even more valuable by taking this off the market of possible developments in the private sector.

There are more, but I think you get the point....

Brad

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 07/08/11 - 05:04 pm
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0
Don't forget that Deke is our

Don't forget that Deke is our first "green" mayor.

How much "green" will it take to build his field of dreams?

For the supporters of his dream, how much money are you willing to invest? And, are you offering up your money or the taxpayers' money?

countyman
20631
Points
countyman 07/08/11 - 07:24 pm
0
0
The proposed project for

The proposed project for downtown Augusta is much more than a regular baseball stadium.. Jim Jacoby doesn't build baseball stadiums and he's still behind the development... The residential, restaurants, and retail haven't gone anywhere..

Insider Information
4009
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Insider Information 07/08/11 - 08:36 pm
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coutyman, care to answer my

coutyman, care to answer my question?

I didn't think so.

augusta citizen
9698
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augusta citizen 07/08/11 - 08:48 pm
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emerydan, you are right about

emerydan, you are right about Greenville, SC. The downtown baseball stadium was one of the LAST projects. The downtown was already "revitalized" before that came along.

Pu239
284
Points
Pu239 07/08/11 - 09:35 pm
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Countyman....Jim Jacoby was a
Unpublished

Countyman....Jim Jacoby was a partner in Atlantic Station wasn't he?

How's that working out?

404_HXC
0
Points
404_HXC 07/09/11 - 12:25 am
0
0
If Ripken wants to go, let

If Ripken wants to go, let him.

Augusta will eventually get another team

Brad Owens
4727
Points
Brad Owens 07/09/11 - 04:41 am
0
0
404_HXC, Exactly. I havce

404_HXC,

Exactly. I havce never seen a good businessman like Mr. Ripken walk away from a profitable business in my life.

He is bluffing and so is the mayor.

We don't NEED this and we cannot afford it,

Brad

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 07/09/11 - 06:34 am
0
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"a new single-season record

"a new single-season record of 201,760 in 2010" Augusta Greenjackets
"The Dragons completed their 2010 season on Monday with an attendance total for the year of 597,433" Dayton Ohio Dragons.

Hucklebuck
43
Points
Hucklebuck 07/09/11 - 10:37 am
0
0
The reasons why we need a new

The reasons why we need a new stadium.
1. Somebody's cousin/friend/golfing buddy needs a construction contract
2. Kickbacks are getting low
3. Because its a new stadium.
4. We want to be cool like everyone else.

hockeymann
226
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hockeymann 07/09/11 - 11:15 am
0
0
First, with regard to

First, with regard to Greenville, as the other poster stated, downtown was already redone there, and PARKING is STILL at a premium of $5 to $8, at the baseball park and at the Bilo Center. Second, as to Dayton, I've seen it too, and its a very nice stadium, but PARKING is still sold at a
premium, and no real extra development around it after about 10 years.
Lake Olmstead Stadium is clean, nice seating, easy access, and has a big
abundance of FREE parking. If Ripken wants to move, let him. We'd have
a new franchise there before he packs up, maybe with a better team than the one we have this year, although a loser now & then has to be expected. We just don't need or want a new stadium for baseball. If it was AA or better, maybe so, but the SAL is well-served with what we now have. Fans leaving a baseball stadium usually don't need to eat or
drink any more after leaving, as we do enough of that at Lake Olmstead.
It's a myth to think fans would flood any downtown restaurants or bars.
The only thing that would increase is vandalism & theft of autos parked on city streets unprotected, along with personal muggings. We don't need more of any of that. We need a new arena more than any
baseball stadium, but I accept that is unfeasible too because of the
overall economic climate which will be present at least until Nov. of 2012, and maybe longer. Bigger concerts and arena attractions
at an arena better than the JB Arena could bring in downtown money,
but that was already voted down also..Maybe Columbia County could
do that still, but where would that leave Richmond with a dormant
JB Arena? Maybe Deke would support a new arena if you named it after
him & put his picture on it lighted up...

Brad Owens
4727
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Brad Owens 07/09/11 - 12:11 pm
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hockeyman, Excellent post and

hockeyman,

Excellent post and the way a majority of people feel.

Brad

Patty-P
3516
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Patty-P 07/09/11 - 12:17 pm
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Hockeyman said "It's a myth

Hockeyman said "It's a myth to think fans would flood any downtown restaurants or bars. The only thing that would increase is vandalism & theft of autos parked on city streets unprotected, along with personal muggings. We don't need more of any of that."

Excellent post and great points.

Riverman1
87157
Points
Riverman1 07/09/11 - 12:43 pm
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0
Brad, you made some great

Brad, you made some great points on Lori's radio show about the stadium and the TEE center. You came across well.

seenitB4
90981
Points
seenitB4 07/09/11 - 12:56 pm
0
0
About parking.....Today in

About parking.....Today in the AJC....it sez Atlantic Station wanted to start charging for all parking & do away w/the free 2hours while shopping or eating at restaurants....only thing is....it caused a BIIIG up roar so they backed down....funny thing...people are sick of promises that go by the way-side!

seenitB4
90981
Points
seenitB4 07/09/11 - 12:57 pm
0
0
someone pushed my finger

someone pushed my finger twice.....twasnt me..lol

jleyes
24
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jleyes 07/09/11 - 02:57 pm
0
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Hockeyman- who should pay for

Hockeyman- who should pay for a new arena. The owners of the Riverhawks or the people? Are you saying public money is acceptable for an arena but not for a multi purpose stadium? You do realize that an arena costs 3-4X what the stadium would and there would be zero private dollars for that right?

Riverman1
87157
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Riverman1 07/09/11 - 05:23 pm
0
0
Concerning a new arena, my

Concerning a new arena, my thoughts are the three counties should build one together in Aiken County right off I-20. With the $100 million Richmond County threw away on the TEE it's about the only possible way.

GaStang22
910
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GaStang22 07/09/11 - 09:23 pm
0
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Absolutely nothing wrong with
Unpublished

Absolutely nothing wrong with the stadium now. I love going there. Until the attendance is so full they are turning away people, its moronic to even think about spending that kind of money for something like that especially in this economy with minor league ball (no offense). Promise me you will investigate all these scammers who refuse to work their whole life, claim false disabilities and keep making more dependants and I'd be more willing to possibly consider some improvements. It wouldn't take 40,000,000 to put a stop to those scammers!!!! Also, thats a whole lotta jobs to be created dedicated to saving money.

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