Atlanta Braves' Billion Dollar Vision


corner-night

Sketches and renderings were released yesterday that gave fans a good idea of how the layout will look for the new Braves’ stadium and entertainment district.  It’s a lofty vision, that if pulled off as intended, could be an experience to not only rival, but far exceed the overall experience of any other ballpark.   I have some concerns about that vision which I’ll share in a minute or so, but for now let’s just look at the details.

The cost of the stadium itself will run at a mere $672 million, with a planned entertainment district built almost as an entry corridor to the stadium itself, at a cost of an extra $400 million, totaling just over a billion.  The Atlanta Braves will pay for both, but will be seeking a development partner to help offset the overall cost.  The video below, brought to you by WSBTV Channel 2 Action News in Atlanta, gives a good overview of what you can expect when you begin attending games in the new stadium in 2017.

 

corner-nightEntertainment Corridor

(Click on the image to enlarge)

The plan is to build an entertainment corridor, almost like an entertainment hallway of sorts that leads to the stadium.  It would consist of restaurants, bars, and retail establishments at first, and then perhaps expand to living spaces as well, with the plan to build vertically instead of horizontally due to the limitations of acreage.

The idea is pretty cool.  If you want to do a bit of bar hopping, eat a fine meal, do some shopping, etc, you won’t have to get in your vehicle and leave the stadium area to do that!

But wait, do you have to do that now?  No, not really.  When you got to the TED today, you get all the shopping you want, good food, lots of beer and mixed drinks, etc., all right there inside the TED!  So my concerns about this entertainment district is whether or not Braves’ fans will really care that much about it, or use it.  Does this mean that there won’t be much in the way of shopping, food, drinks, etc., inside the stadium?  You see my concern, right?

I don’t know how it all pans out, but personally I’m not impressed with a stadium where I cannot get all I need INSIDE that same stadium.  I’m fairly certain there will be a mix, with establishments inside and outside the actual stadium, to meet the wants of every fan, but I’m not personally sold on this idea of an entertainment district.  Maybe I’m just an old fogey that goes to games to watch games, and do little else.  Oh well, we shall see.

 

Braves_z7iaf9tm_2p8qknniThe Stadium

Keep in mind that all these renderings are just that, renderings, and while things could certainly change between now and construction, we get a pretty good idea from the rendering what the new stadium will be like.

I’ve heard some make comments that they love the fact that the majority of the seating is on the infield and down the 1st and 3rd base lines, with little seating in the outfield.  I understand why some would prefer that.  Some don’t want to go to games unless they are close to the action, with a birds-eye or better view of the infield.  There are, however, other fans who like the outfield experience – that blue-collar kind of baseball bum kind of feel.

There appears to be huge panels on the infield to help with shading, which seems to indicate no plans for a retractable roof.  This bugs me a little, because with the spring and summer rains that Atlanta gets, as well as the flaming dog-days of summer, I’ve always hoped Atlanta could somehow get a retractable roof.  No, I don’t want a dome either, but a simple roof, though expensive, would mean a great deal for fan comfort.  The Braves have to prioritize though, and certainly there’s still time for initial plans to change.  We shall see.

 

Final Thoughts

You can never do anything that’s going to make everyone happy, and while there are things about the proposed plan that I don’t much care for, I fully support this move in every way, don’t see really any downside at this point, and personally cannot wait until 2017.

The entertainment district means little to me.  I like to eat, and can drink with the best of you, but I don’t much like the idea of “entertainment” districts.  I prefer a good dog and a beer inside the park, where I know I won’t miss a minute of the action.  All fans are different though, with varying ages, varying levels of fandom, and varying needs when they go to a game.   I think the majority will love the experience though, so kudos to artists, designers, architects, and planners.

We’ve heard of some who are miffed that Atlanta is moving to a new home, miffed about transportation issues, taxes, etc.,  but it seems to me those rumblings come from a small sample (See our morning Chop this morning for some numbers) of the overall population.  We still have several years before we see the plans take shape and become reality, but so far, minus a few objections, I like what I see.  What’s your take?

 

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Tags: Atlanta Braves FanSided

  • fireboss

    As I understand the entertainment district concept, it isn’t about taking the baseball fan out of the ballpark. It’s to keep people coming to the area even when there’s no baseball; Disney on the Chattahoochee was what they called it. I envision shops restaurants some amusements that don’t require large areas to build – like perhaps those top down thrill rides you see in Vegas – theaters and movies. A place where you go for a day out and stay for a night game. I’m certain you’ll still be able to get your Teheran Tostada’s, Johnson Brats and other assorted artery cloggers to wash down with beer inside. At least I hope so, I do love Brats and beer.

    • Matthew Jones

      Frankly, to me it’ll be interesting to see what happens with the Cobb Galleria mall (not Cumberland – Cobb Galleria was opened to be a ‘high-end’ mall and never has really lived up to that name. More or less, it’s been only about half full since it opened). I think that you’ll see a combination of higher end shops and some good restaurants coming there.

      Also, I should mention that this sort of development is happening quite literally in my back yard here in Emerson. Lake Point development is going to have lots of sports-related stuff happening, but will include things like movie theater, restaurants, a Braves Clubhouse Store, and some things like a ‘Polercoaster’ (which is something that you definitely see in Vegas). It’ll be interesting to see how these two developments come about at the same time.

  • Matthew Jones

    Completely off topic, but I wanted to let y’all know that I was one of the winners of the Fansided Topps contest. Sometime in the next few weeks I’ll be getting a Topps Archive Print of the ’87 Dale Murphy card. Definite thanks to Tomahawk Take for posting the contest. I’ll try to get a way to put a picture up to the editors when I get it.

    • fireboss

      congratulations! Glad we could help

    • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

      Cool!

    • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

      Matthew, you’ve been truly blessed this year, in more ways than one bro. Congrats. I have that card. :)