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OLYMPIC STADIUM IN FMCP!

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I just finished watching a late-breaking news confernce on NY1 about the plans to build the Olympic Stadium and other 2012 Olympic related structures at FMCP.

Bloomberg, Wilpon, Doctoroff, Marshall were all giddy and grinning. They kept mentioning that they have been trying for years to get rid of the "junk yards" at Willets Point and now they will.

The Mets will play at Yankee Stadium for the 2012 season and then return to a spanking new stadium for 2013 I just hope they can make it look somewhat like a baseball park by then

This all apparently was cooked up in the past 72 hours. Now we need to see if NY gets the bid. I doubt it but a new place for my Mets to play would be divine!

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Whatever happened to the proposals for a new Yankee Stadium?

By the way, whoever mentioned the possibility of NY losing the Olympics 2012 bid, then having a much stronger chance for 2016 (especially if the new stadium is under construction or finished when the 2016 decision happens) is right- that's how it works. You almost always have to lose a time or two to have a reasonable shot at winning. Plus they like to rotate from continent to continent, and it will be North America's turn (at least something besides Europe assuming Paris or London wins 2012, and Asia [beijing] is hosting in 2008). They'd like to put it in South Africa, but everybody says South Africa won't be ready for another 15-20 years.

The only drawback is, each country is expected to narrow their field down to a single nominee, and last week L.A. said they intend to put in a bid for 2016, with virtually all facilities and infrastructure already in place.

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I saw a webcast of the newsconference at <a href="http://www.nyc.gov" target="_blank">http://www.nyc.gov</a> Apparently the Mets would pay for a new stadium that would open in 2009. It would be located in the current Shea Stadium parking lot east of the current stadium. If New York wins the Olympic bid for 2012 the Mets would probably play in Yankee Stadium or a New Yankee Stadium (which may be announced very soon) in the 2012 seson while their new stadium would be converted and expanded to 80,000 seats for the Olympics. After the games the stadium would return to its baseball configuration with 45,000 seats. The Mets would pay for the stadium while the city and state would pay for some infrastructure. I believe the city and the Olympic committee would pay for the conversion process. While it is probably too late to save the 2012 bid, it does provide a plan that could easily be used to get the Olympics in 2016, when as I posted earlier, New York would stand an excellent chance to host the games. Congratulations to David Oats for the idea of building an Olympic Stadium in Queens. He was certainly ahead of the politicians on this one. As far as the Jets go, it looks like they will end up building a new stadium in the Meadowlands with the Giants.

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Wow! Are they saying the West Side stadium is now dead?

If so, something happened behind the scenes, and it wasn't a sudden attack of common sense....

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I saw a similar news report on WPIX but not a word about how this will be funded. There is not much of a chance for money from Albany based on what happened last week. How would a baseball park, if that is what is planned for the Mets, qualify as an Olympic style stadium? Or did I miss something?

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This is the supposed new Mets Stadium.

<a href="http://www.stadiumpage.com/stpages/mets.html" target="_blank">http://www.stadiumpage.com/stpages/mets.html</a>

I have such fond memories of Shea it will be hard to see it go. The Yankees are getting a new stadium. WFAN reported several months ago that it was pretty much a done deal. The only hangup was what besides the facade at the current stadium would be saved.

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Thank you for the maps and pictures, Mary Ellen. I just read on the WCBS website that the mayor claims the stadium will be privately funded. If this is the case, why wasn't this the initial proposal rather than going to the public trough to find money for a massive stadium? If what he says is true then it is the politicians who ruined NYC's chances for an Olympic bid by not presenting this plan from the very start.

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Thank you for the maps and pictures, Mary Ellen.  I just read on the WCBS website that the mayor claims the stadium will be privately funded.  If this is the case, why wasn't this the initial proposal rather than going to the public trough to find money for a massive stadium?  If what he says is true then it is the politicians who ruined NYC's chances for an Olympic bid by not presenting this plan from the very start.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Good question - however I think your answer is in a previous post. If the Jets are really working with the Giants to build at the Meadowlands, it may mean that the NEW NAME would be the New Jersey Jets. A stadium on the West Side would ensure the Jets stay a NY team but with a sizable investment in NJ, that is not absolutely the case. The Politicos may have been trying to avert another Ny team from leaving the area. Just my take on things

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NYC officials are proposing to do in reverse what was accomplished in Atlanta in 1996. There, the Olympic committee built the Olympic stadium with the idea of turning it into a baseball stadium, for the Braves, after the games were finished.

What NYC proposes appears to be much tougher. Assuming the Mets don't get into the playoffs; sorry Mets fans; you're asking construction crews to add 35,000 seats to a reconfigured stadium with all the electrical, plumbing and mechanical work to be done in about nine months. Through a New York City winter! Plus the IOC likes to see trial events at new venues to "work out the bugs" (logistical, transportation) beforehand. Both Atlanta and Athens had world class track meets in their Olympic stadiums in the months leading up to the games.

Sounds like a recipe for round the clock overtime and ballooning budgets. Of course the time crunch goes away if the Mets agree to spend 2011 and 2012 at Yankee Stadium.

Bill

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What NYC proposes appears to be much tougher. Assuming the Mets don't get into the playoffs; sorry Mets fans; you're asking construction crews to add 35,000 seats to a reconfigured stadium with all the electrical, plumbing and mechanical work to be done in about nine months. Through a New York City winter!

>>> Sure it can be done 

Plus the IOC likes to see trial events at new venues to "work out the bugs" (logistical, transportation) beforehand. Both Atlanta and Athens had world class track meets in their Olympic stadiums in the months leading up to the games.

>>>Apparently this will be done at the old Shea, which apparently won't be torn down right away to make room for parking. (this i gotta see)

Sounds like a recipe for round the clock overtime and ballooning budgets. Of course the time crunch goes away if the Mets agree to spend 2011  and 2012 at Yankee Stadium.

>>>The plan is for the Mets to play at Yankee Stadium in 2012

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

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The conversion of the Mets ballpark sounds very inefficient. The type of ballpark Wilpon wants is so stylized that if it comes off in all its glory, it will be a shame to turn it into an olympic sized stadium...and then back into the ballpark. I think it would make much more sense to build the Mets their park, build the Olympic Stadium right next to it (maybe renovate Shea for the Olympics and bring back the orange and blue panels, showing that NY State pride!) and try to woo the Jets to that park. The Jets are being really ridiculous about staying in NJ.

I think you put a plan like that in place, centering the Olympics in FMCP and NYC could be a sinch for the 2016 Olympics. This is something I think would cause such a groundswell of pride in Queens that the Olympic support needed will be there. Plus I assum there is (there better be!) money in this whole kitty to renovate the NYS Pavilion properly (the Olympic usage possibilities for it are endless!).

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I did hear in today's news reports that with this new proposal, the city and state will be asked to contribute to the stadium construction. In any event, this proposal sounds convoluted. Which is more important to the city's long term future--a ballpark for the Mets or an Olympic stadium which may or may not ever have a tenant after the two week games? I don't get the city's thinking on this. NYC does not need any international recognition. Now, if it could stage a games and have a 100% viable, long term use for the stadium which would be of benefit to all of the taxpayers of NYS, then go for it.

To cob together a proposal which still costs the taxpayers untold hundreds of millions of dollars with no clear purpose for the venues once the games come to an end is foolish at best and irresponsible at worst. It just all seems so makeshift to me. If this Olympic bid is so important, then why not bag 2012 and do this correctly and plan for down the road? If the city blows this 2012 bid with a silly, unworkable proposal, then the USOC will not give the nod to NYC as their official selection for the IOC to then consider for many, many years to come.

Furthermore, two world's fairs resulted in demolition of all that was built and neglect of what little remained. One would think there must be a few elected officials who would like to avoid that waste along with huge expenditures of taxpayer money which never results in anything but a financial loss.

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There may be some ongoing confusion here. I'm not even local and have only seen media reports.

Here's my understanding on it:

Phase 1:

City and State contribute (or pay for) infrastructure improvements to make way for the new stadium. That means clearing out the junk yards, for instance, and seeing that any hazardous material cleanups get done. Maybe some freeway offramps or expanded egress lanes too.

The Mets pay for the new stadium itself.

When it's done, they move in.

Phase 1 is NOT contingent on any particular decision about the Olympics.

Phase 2 (assuming NYC doesn't win the Olympics and is not pursuing 2016 Olympics)

Shea Stadium gets torn down (by the way, what do you want to bet the new stadium isn't named SHEA. I'll bet the name gets auctioned off to some corporate sponsor, like many other stadiums these days). Who pays for the demolition is not clear, but if it's currently owned by the taxpayers, one would think that's who pays for the dynamite and the wrecking ball.

Phase 2 (if the Olympics are coming).

Old Shea doesn't get torn down right away [my conjecture- I don't think I've seen that detail in writing]. A year before the Olympics, the Mets will temporarily move out of their brand new stadium, with a choice of playing next door at old Shea, or at Yankee Stadium (if it's 2016 there may be a NEW Yankee Stadium by then). Who pays for the relocation expense is not clear.

New Shea (or whatever name it gets) gets a re-model to expand it to 80,000 seats and install a running track. Re-configuration expenses paid by City, State, and American Olympic Committee (the relative shares TBD).

After the Olympics, the same thing in reverse- configure it back to baseball configuration, and the Mets move back. In Atlanta, the Olympics were at the end of July/early August, and a Paralympics Games right after that, and the stadium was done in time for the Braves to move in by their April opening day the following season. So apparently a rebuild only needs aout 8 months. Of course in Georgia it's a "right to work" state, and in New York you have to deal with union work rules (or big payoffs to make things happen quickly).

By the way, in Atlanta they used the "old" stadium next door to host the Olympic baseball competition, and it was also used in the opening ceremonies to "stage" the athletes from all the nations (sitting them in the various seating sections) until their time came to march next door into the new stadium behind their flag.

After the Olympics, just like in Atlanta, the old stadium could be torn down and turned into parking lot expansion.

Bottom line, Mets pay for the new stadium in baseball configuration, taxpayers and American Olympic Committee donors (corporations) pay for everything else.

ONE OTHER NOTE: In Atlanta they decided to save money by timing the completion of the stadium to roughly coincide with when the baseball team would move in (right after the Olympics). They avoided the cost of two reconfigurations by building it in Olympics configuration to begin with, then only having to deal with ONE reconfiguration when the Olympics left town.

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(maybe renovate Shea for the Olympics

Now there's an idea! It's interesting because among the design features by the Shea architects (as I recall reading a couple of years ago) were two options- the "round" stadium could be expanded through the outfield fence to put in a running track for the Olympics (basically what Atlanta did), OR the open end could be completely closed in circular fashion like Vet Stadium in Philly or Busch Stadium in St. Louis, and they could put a dome on top. Apparently the structure was built to be able to support a dome.

But of course, you couldn't do BOTH.

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By the way, centering the Olympics in FMCP (as "Olympic Park") means more than just the main stadium- besides the previously proposed whitewater, rowing and archery(?) venues, it would also likely mean things like a huge media center (complete broadcast facilities for thousands of technicians, including multiple studios for "hosts").

Randy Lambertus says he thinks Olympic Park will be so big the athletes, press and public will need a monorail to get around...

Eisner is on his way out- maybe New Yorkers can talk Disney into loaning a monorail or two. Didn't somebody yesterday say Disney buried a couple of monorails in Florida? ! Just dig 'em up, dust 'em off, and paint some Olympic rings on the sides....

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A little OT, but still trying to stay on topic. Randy you got me thinking, say NYC doesn't get the olympics for 2012, and doesn't bother trying for 2016, though some reccomend it, could it be possible to host an unofficial 2014-2015 world's fair, hoping the winter olympics are far far away from the USA and Canada.

As much as any of us would like this, I just can't see it financially feasable the way NYS and NYC are right now, let alone how the 2012 olympics can truly be pulled off.

If we don't get the 2012 olympics, and don't bother trying for the 2016 olympics, than I say put the money planned aside for the olympics back to the state and city. Don't bother with any type of expostion unless one wants a flushing-debt fairgrounds again.

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NYC 2012 has on its web page maps of hwat the new plan would look like. A map of all Olympic venues is at <a href="http://www.nyc2012.com/images/olympic_x_plan.jpg" target="_blank">http://www.nyc2012.com/images/olympic_x_plan.jpg</a>

A map of the proposed Mets/Olympic Stadium and its surrounding area as it would be during an Olympics is at <a href="http://www.nyc2012.com/images/hi-res/STADIUM_061205B1.jpg" target="_blank">http://www.nyc2012.com/images/hi-res/STADIUM_061205B1.jpg</a> The media and press centers would be along Willets Point Boulevard right near the new stadium.

Today's New York Times has an article on the image of Queens as a second choice destination on page one and at <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/14/nyregion/14queens.html" target="_blank">http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/14/nyregion/14queens.html</a>? Read the photos of the captions: ""Men in Black" joined many residents in mocking the leftovers from the 1964 World's Fair (it shows a picture of the scene of when the Unisphere is destroyed in the film). The Elmhurst gas tanks were beloved landmarks until they came down in 1996." (implying tthat Queens can't hold on to its landmarks. The Ampitheater and the current state of the New York State Pavilion could also be used to illustrate this point). It seems the NYT whenever it mentions FMCP thinks it is one big junkyard of old, rotted away World's Fair ruins, which is not the case. Earlier this year they called the Unisphere "striking but decrepit" in an article on the Queens Museum.

Hopefully moving the center of the Olympic plan to Queens will benefit FMCP, particularly the New York State Pavilion. A stabilized, renovated and restored NYSP would be an ideal venue for some of the smaller Olympic sports, making the games even more compact. During the games the towers could be used for security and for television cameras wanting an aerial view of the area. Before and after the games the Tent of Tommorrow could be used for various area functions like concerts, plays, banquets, sporting events, festivals (like a fanfest during the U.S. Open), graduations and commencements. It could also be used as an extension of the Theater in the Park. The towers could be used as an observation deck where one could get a view of the area plus the New York skyline from the east and air traffic coming in and out of the airports.

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New York news outlets are reporting that the Yankees plan to build a new stadium in the Bronx on a site next to the current stadium. It has a 2009 planned completion date. More interesting, perhaps, is that the team plans to provide virtually all of the funding for this stadium. At this point, they have not made any request for tax dollars.

How is it that the Yankees can do this and are willing to do this using their own funding, but the taxpayers are asked to pay for a stadium for the Jets and now the Mets? If the current Olympic proposal calls for a new stadium in Queens, which will eventually be used by the Mets, why can't the Mets provide most of the funding and the specifications required for the two week Olympic games be funded by other sources? I realize it is a radical idea, but if a team wants a stadium, it should have to pay for that stadium. Taxpayers should not be asked to subsidize an already incredibly wealthy group of team owners.

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Jim, read the explanation of Phase 1 above.

The Mets are paying for their new stadium, regardless of whether the Olympics come to New York or not.

Taxpayers would only contribute to any temporary remodeling of that stadium to bring in the Olympics.

So it sounds like the Yankees deal and the Mets deal are on pretty equal financial footing, the only exception perhaps being that taxpayers might have to pay for some environmental cleanup in the car dump area near Shea to get it ready for the new Mets stadium.

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Rhandy - that's correct - the Mets and Yankees deal are mirrors of each other - both will require NYS sponsored dollars for various infrastucture - only difference is the Olympic component which is as a result of the NYS bid - not the Mets or Yankees request to hold it in their venues

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Yes, I did read in the NY Times, today, that the two deals are similar and that the state would pay for infrastructure to and from each stadium.

Who pay--and how much--for modifications needed to make the new Mets stadium suitable for Olympic use? I do not understand that component of this proposal.

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