Benefits “the aging stadium does not allow us
Benefits of funding a new stadium for the Chargers. COMM/215 October 29, 2011 Vince Reardon Benefits of funding a new stadium for the Chargers. For the past few years, San Diegans have been faced with the very real possibility that our beloved Chargers National Football League (NFL) team may “bolt” the city for greener pastures in Los Angeles.
This is due to the inability of the team and local politicians to agree on a plan to replace archaic Qualcomm stadium, current home of the Chargers.The possible loss of a professional football team that has been identified with “America’s favorite city” for almost 50 years has life-long fans in a panic. The Chargers special counsel, Mark Fabiani states that “the aging stadium does not allow us to generate sufficient revenue to remain financially competitive over the long haul with the top teams in the NFL” (Fabiani, October 2011). This basically means “build us a new stadium or we will find someone who will”. The problem is who pays for a new stadium that could cost upwards of one billion dollars?Opponents of a mostly publically funded stadium say the city is flat broke and cannot afford to give taxpayer hand-outs to billionaire owners. The city is mired in a massive pension debacle, cannot afford to fix roads, and has had to reduce emergency services all in the name of budget cutbacks.
These are a few of the many fiscal problems that San Diego has been struggling with during an economic downturn. Few detractors would agree to subsidize a sports facility with many more pressing issues to be addressed.Subsidizing the construction of a modern football stadium also could be the answer to these economic problems.
The redevelopment associated with a downtown project could revitalize the downtrodden east village, bringing new businesses and residential areas. The only evidence needed to support that idea is already in place downtown, Petco Park. The businesses that have sprung up around the home of the San Diego Padres have turned downtown from a place to avoid into one of the most vibrant tourist areas in the state.
The emergence of the Gaslamp Quarter as a destination for visitors is a direct result of that redevelopment. We are a city that attracts many convention groups and other visitors that spend their money downtown. Further improvements to the area would have significant economic benefits. Property values would go up. According to studies sponsored by The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, cities that gain an NFL team have a higher quality of life than cities that don’t, and this translates into higher rents. (Shea, March 2007).
The study concluded that increased property tax revenues “is large enough to perhaps justify the provisions of subsidies to NFL teams, especially in larger cities”. (Shea, March 2007). San Diego is the second largest city in the largest state in the union. What do the Chargers mean to us as a community? For decades numerous social scientists have noted that the importance of sports lies not in its monetary effects, but in its role and value as both a social and socializing institution (Swindell, D.
, Rosentraub, M. S. & Tsvetkova, S 2008).These days the monetary effects are probably as important as the social aspects of having a professional football team to represent your city.
Let’s not downplay the cultural significance of the Chargers. We have some of the most beautiful parks, museums, and art institutions in the country, and our zoo is second to none. Many of these exist only through public subsidies. I say the Chargers are no less of a cultural necessity than these civic assets, and all are crucial to attracting visitors and new residents to our city. Let’s put the decision to fund a new football stadium where it belongs; in the hands of the voters.
Reference Shea, D. R. (March 12, 2007). What does it mean to have a professional football franchise? San Diego Business Journal, 28(11), 55-55. Fabiani, M.
(October 11, 2011). Chargers. com Q&A: Mark Fabiani. Retrieved from http://www. chargers. com/news/article-1/QA-MarkFabiani Swindell, D.
, Rosentraub, M. S. , & Tsvetkova, S. (2008). Public Dollars, Sports Facilities, and Intangible Benefits: The Value of a Team to a Region’s Residents and Tourists.
Journal of Tourism, 9(2), 133-159. Retrieved from http://ehis. ebscohost.