Thursday, February 12, 2009

Comparing Arena Costs

Here's a look on what an arena might cost based on some real-life examples from up I-75 a ways.

This is the new Lucas County Arena (pix from Dayton Most Metro) smack dab in the heart of downtown Toledo, a few blocks from the Mudhens' new baseball park. This is a true multipurpose arena (but designed to accomodate hockey) designed using "green" design features.

8,000 seats. Cost around $80,000

In nearby Bowling Green, the new basketball/volleyball stadium (with some other spaces for conferencing and such) for Bowling Green State University.

5,000 seats. Cost estimated at $36M

Then there are the Dayton proposals.

The Austin Road arena and event center is projected at $60M, but the number of proposed seats is unknown.

The Bombers proposal for Dave Hall Plaza:

5,5000 seats. Costs $30M

Taking a look at cost per seat

Toledo: $10,000/seat

Bowling Green: $7,200/seat

Dayton: $5,454/seat

Austin Road: ?

While it looks like Dayton is the cheapest, it probably is a low ball estimate and "cheap" could mean el-cheapo, too.

Comparing price ranges again:

Toledo: $80M

Austin Road: $60M

Bowling Green: $36M

Dayton: $30M

Doing this right, maybe a quality facility with some design innovations, would put the cost of a stadium at Toledo's range, $10K/seat.

Assuming 5,500 seats for Dayton: 5,500 seats x $10K/seat = $55M for a Toledo-style facility downtown, sort of in the Austin Road price range.

If this area didn't have such dysfunctional and shortsighted political leadership and better planning we would be following Toledos lead and building a quality multipurpose arena downtown.

The Toledo arena was funded exactley as Austin Road was proposed to be funded, via a countywide hotel tax. But unlike Dayton county and city officials apparently worked together to site the stadium in the heart of downtown, which is what most normal citys and metropolitan areas do (Grand Rapids is another example of a center city arena with minor league hockey).

Too bad, huh? We could have had something like what Toledo's getting.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The downtown arena on Dave Hall Plaza would have zero site acquisition costs- and no demolition either.
For a better cost comparison- maybe check out what they spent at Miami on the new Goggin Arena (Which is first class all the way).
Toledo is supposed to have the Storm return to the ECHL btw- I've seen people mention there is no team.
Note- the County was ready to up the hotel tax for Austin Road without any drawings or pro-formas.
Something stinks here.
I highly recommend this post on the subject: