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Bloomberg says Camden Yards was a stupid idea


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I have become convinced over time that public stadium deals are a way for rich people to get a handout and for mayors/city councils to measure their *****.

But Camden Yards seems a pretty bad example - the city/state got a very good deal (at least relative to other stadiums) and it's worked out OK for the area. Like Verizon Center in DC.

I believe Verizon Center was privately financed.

I remember when I was an intern in college working for the state of Maryland and my boss said he got in trouble for not spending his entire yearly budget. They called it wasting money. I told him he should have bought me a Porsche 911 to drive around in instead of the stupid little Chevys they had. Didn't work but maybe sports team owners are better at persuasion.

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This is true. Camden Yards had very little to do with revitalizing the Inner Harbor. Harborplace, the Aquariam and several other attractions revitalized the Inner Harbor several years before a baseball park at Camden Yards was even thought of.

Camden Yards projects were proposed as far back as the 1960s. The first attempt was retractable domed stadium in 1967. Then a dome stadium in 1974. Proposals. Camden Station area was always gonna be the location of a new stadium dating back to the 1960s but each time financing became an issue. Assembly nixed it. By 1980s it was a priority to make Baltimore viable again.

Harborplace and Aquariam are day things. You come for a few hours then you leave. It doesn't keep people coming every day or more then 5 or 6 times a year. Camden Yards did that. Which has allowed the Harborplace and the Aquariam to still be viable. As you got people going to a game and going to the Harborplace to eat or grab a drink. Then you have families that can come down for the whole day.. going to the Aquariam and then catching a game. Without Camden Yards, you are losing more revenue.

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