Vaughn: Rams have no hope of getting public support for new dome
Posted on May 15, 2012 at 11:24 AM
Tuesday, May 15 at 1:02 PM
ST. LOUIS (News 4 Sports) -- The Rams plans for the renovation of the Edward Jones Dome looks appealing. Some architect did a nice job with the drawings. Looks like a stadium we'd all love, and it has almost no chance of ever happening.
Billionaire Stan Kroenke, who wanted to keep his plans secret and not let the public to know anything about them, now wants the public to pay most, if not all, of the price of the stadium renovation.
The estimated cost of renovation is about $700 million dollars. In addition, the city would lose an estimated $500 million in convention income while the stadium was under construction. Do the Rams really expect taxpayers to believe that'd be a good deal for this area? Probably not. The Rams plan is more likely designed to cause taxpayers and elected officials to throw up their arms in frustration and do nothing about the dome, allowing the Rams to move out of St. Louis after the 2014 football season. It does seem that this is the direction we're headed.
The Rams are coming off a five-year stretch in which they were the worst team in NFL history with a record of 15-65. They've not only been a terrible team, they've been terribly boring as well.
Kroenke has been involved as a minority partner during this period. He's had a say in the direction of the team. Now, after half a decade of providing an utterly horrendous product, he expects the taxpayers to spend upwards of $700 million to improve the dome? That won't happen. No way. No how.
The CVC would be better off doing nothing to the stadium and allowing the Rams to move. Once they're gone, the CVC can improve the dome in a logical, cost efficient way and proceed in the pursuit of another team for St. Louis. The Jacksonville Jaguars come immediately to mind.
Maybe this would create a win/win situation. Diehard Rams fans (if there are any left) will still be able to watch the Rams on television, whether they're playing in London or Los Angeles.
If they stay in St. Louis, having alienated so much of their fan base, chances are good that many of their games won't be sold out, and therefore will be blacked out for local television. If you really love the Rams, you'll probably be able to watch more of their games if they move.
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