The teams of Atlanta must be having an obsession with getting new stadiums.
First, Falcons owner Arthur Blank pressured the city to get a newly-built stadium for his team. He slick threatened to take the Falcons to LA at a point. Of course, Atlanta caved (they love the Falcons too much) and will be getting their new digs in 2017.
Now the Braves will leave Turner Field behind in 2016 and head over Cobb County in 2017.
ESPN.com reported that the new stadium would be located at the interchange for two of Atlanta’s busiest interstates, I-75 and I-285, and the area has been plagued by major traffic problems for years — despite northbound I-75 being expanded as wide as seven lanes near the proposed site.
The Braves also gave their take on the move
“The reason for moving is simple. The current location has certain issues that are insurmountable and will only become more problematic over the years. These fundamental issues involve how you, our fans, access Turner Field. There is a lack of consistent mass transportation, a lack of sufficient parking and a lack of direct access to interstates.”
Honestly, there’s nothing wrong with either the Georgia Dome or Turner Field. These stadiums each hold significance not only to the city, but sports in general. Heck the Olympics were held in there. But then again, we really know why it’s happening: money.
The Falcons & Braves both know that the moves would be cost-beneficial in terms of revenue. Imagine another Super Bowl or Final Four or NCAA College Football national title held in that stadium. The money racked up in there would be enormous. As for the Braves, an All-Star game hosting bid in definitely in the horizon.
The Braves’ move doesn’t seem all that bad. They’re technically still in Atlanta. As for the Falcons, they literally have to tear down historical black churches just to get the space for their new stadium.
So the Georgia Dome will be gone by 2017. The fate of Turner Field has yet to be determined. But if you’re an Atlanta fan, cherish these final moments you’ve got in those stadiums.
And I know the Atlanta Hawks may be feeling a little left out. But Phillips Arena is fine. You don’t need a new stadium. Don’t even ask.