More Thoughts on the Downtown Winston-Salem Stadium

The following thoughts aren't mine, they were emailed to me by fellow Lewisville-ian Dwight and I thought they were well worth sharing (with his permission):

This is in reference to your comments about the downtown baseball stadium.  As a couple of Lewisville residents, aren’t we glad to be distanced (albeit only a few yards) from those dodos in Winston-Salem. 
   I have recently enjoyed watching the College Baseball World Series on ESPN and was very interested in the commentator’s take on the new TD Ameritrade Park soon to replace Rosenblatt Field as the site of the College World Series.  As you would expect, they said, “It’s going to be a beautiful facility”, but mostly they bemoaned the loss of a very special landmark.
   Well, does that sound familiar?  We (and yes, I include us among the dodos because Forsyth County residents have a stake in this fiasco as well) had a very special landmark in Ernie Shore Field but now it is gone.
   All this prompted me to google Omaha, Nebraska for info on the financing of their new baseball facility.  I have to admit that I am not the sleuth that I would like to be, but I did learn that their new facility is expected to cost $120 Million and will have a capacity of 25,000 and TD Ameritrade is paying $20 M for naming rights.  The remainder (I think) will be financed by public bonds administered by a special Commission.  WOW!  Why didn’t we think of that?  We have the successful WSFC Utilities Commission and the unsuccessful Tanglewood Park Authority as guides.  In my opinion, The Utility Commission was successful because it functioned as an independent Commission staffed with competent people (only recently have they seen revenue decline because local municipalities have been using solid waste fees to fund their recycling efforts).  The Tanglewood Park Authority was never successful because it was never “independent” of elected officials.
 
So where are we?
 
Omaha gets a new 25000 capacity stadium.
We get a 5000 capacity stadium.
 
Omaha pays $120M minus $20M. ($4000 per seat)
We pay $42M (and rising).  ($8000 per seat and rising)
 
Omaha owns their stadium when completed.
We have to wait 25 years for a deed (good luck Jon, I won’t be around then).
 
Omaha will have a watchdog if they appoint competent people to the Commission.
We have Billy Prim.
 
   Jon, I have chosen to send this comment to you via e-mail because it is somewhat critical of elected officials and I do not feel comfortable using your site for my agenda.
 
   You have my permission to post this comment on your sit or not as you choose.  As always, thank you for an interesting (and provocative) site.
 
Dwight

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