Wednesday, July 13, 2005

More Reasons Real Salt Lake Needs it's Own Stadium (Downtown)

More reasons Rice Eccles Stadium is a terrible permanent home for Real Salt Lake: First, Major League Soccer has insisted every team have its own facility. They correctly understand that it is the only way a team can be profitable. Second, RSL is getting RIPPED OFF at Rice Eccles. RES takes 90% of concessions and 27% of merchandise! So lame. Especially the merchandise. RSL has to hand over more than a quarter of its sales from its own apparel. Third, scheduling conflicts. Who gets the field when they both need it? Fourth, can RSL or its fans ever truly call the place home? Even if legal papers put the teams on equal footing (would the U ever agree to that?), the stadium will be home of the Running Utes FIRST AND ALWAYS. Why should a major league sports franchise with 17,000 plus fans per game accept the backseat like that? Fifth, the San Jose Earthquakes are playing on a converted university field and now they're being sold to Houston. Sixth, RES is too big. There is all kinds of wasted space that degrades the fan and player experience. It's better for both fans and players to experience a full house. A better fan experience turns the curious into fans and fans into season seat holders. Conclusion: Rice Eccles is a football stadium. Real Salt Lake is a soccer team. Two different teams, different sports, different needs. Another successful major league sports franchise will bring in far more money and opportunity than we could ever spend on a stadium. We just need a leader with the courage and imagination to move forward because this is a project that will benefit the entire county.

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