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Could a similar scenario unfold in Toronto? The details may be different, but the end result is the same: a large and complicated view boils down to more acceptable parts, and there follows a lot of horse haggling involving cost and land use and ultimately a stage of baseball emerges at the end. Maybe it’s next to the Rogers Center, maybe it’s somewhere else on the waterfront that’s currently being imagined for better things.
The thing to remember as the process unfolds is that Rogers owns a baseball stadium that she already owns and that she bought, at age 15, for less than 5% of her cost. construction. If he wants to replace it, it should be a project that depends entirely on the management of Rogers and its shareholders. The stadium gambit inevitably includes a call for public money to help pay for up-front costs, or back tax breaks, or soft land arrangements, or a combination of the three. Of course, this benefits the owners of the team, but hey: new stadium! Outfield Beer Garden! Court!
There are probably some Blue Jays fans already out there who dream of a PNC Park North or an Oracle Park East – the charming waterfront stadiums of Pittsburgh and San Francisco – and who would be fine if a few dollars of the taxpayers were going for this instead of filling in potholes.
But that’s just the trap that the team owners set. Of course, it would be nice if the Blue Jays replaced their fiery old dome. And if they do, the public should be prepared to support them in one specific way, and only one way: by buying tickets.
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