In New York City, where Inc. is located, the city is considering adding two new stadiums: a new Brooklyn home court for the New Jersey Nets and a state-of-the-art sports stadium on the west side of Manhattan that would serve as both home to the New York Jets and the crown jewel of New York's 2012 Olympic bid. Estimated price tag for taxpayers: somewhere between $600 million and $1 billion. Local politicians and businesses love the idea. Residents hate it.
When your hometown decides to spend your money on building you a new sports stadium, is it a boon for your business? Or is that the time to move out?
There are about a dozen cities that are considering funding new sports stadiums to either lure new franchises or pacify existing tenants, a list that includes Miami, Newark, Dallas, D.C. and even New York City.
The days are largely gone where teams finance their own construction, so that means shelling out by taxpayers. Mayors and team owners crow from their soapboxes that investing tax dollars in sports stadiums will give a healthy boost to the local economy – that it will mean oodles of new jobs.
But what kind of jobs? Many economists have gone on record to say that new stadiums actually wreak havoc with existing businesses and replace stable neighborhood employers with seasonal minimum wage service jobs. Seems like a poor return on a billion dollar investment to me.
How do you think a new stadium in your hometown would affect your bottom line?
Darren Dahl is a contributing editor at Inc. magazine, which he has written for since 2004. He also works as a collaborative writer and editor and has partnered with several high-profile authors. Dahl lives in Asheville, North Carolina.