Thursday, May 19, 2005

Sports: Stadium Scam

Mayor Bloomberg in NYC is pushing for a new stadium for the Jets on the West Side of Manhattan. There are a million 2.2 billion reasons why this is a bad idea logistically and financially, but the best, clearest argument I've read regarding this particular project is this [via Steve G]:
...hardly any of the ordinary taxpayers and transit riders subsidizing this glittering playground on the Hudson will be able to see the Jets play there. This is not like Yankee Stadium, where you can actually go to a game. Unless you've already got season tickets (or unless you're wealthy and can afford one of the staggeringly expensive luxury suites), you're out of luck.

The Jets' Web site couldn't be clearer about this. Under the heading "Waitlist Policy," it says: "The New York Jets are sold out on a season ticket basis. There are NO individual game tickets available. If you are not a season ticket holder, you may join our Waitlist. There are currently over 10,000 people on our Waitlist."

You have to pay $50 a year just to be on the waiting list. The wait is approximately 10 years. And after waiting 10 years, the maximum number of tickets you can buy is four. Does this sound like a good deal for a stadium that you're helping to pay for? [link]

I think pretty much all publicly-financed stadiums are a crock of shit, but this one is by far the worst. People's eyes tend to glaze over when the numbers get tossed around, and once you're talking in the hundreds of millions, it becomes too abstract for the layman. Pointing out that the average Jet fan will likely never see the inside of this place ought to drive it home to everyone in NYC that Bloomberg's chasing a complete boondoggle.

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