Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Downtown Will Be Soundstown in 2007, Updated

Mayor Purcell signs off on a smaller-than-pitched stadium deal with the Sounds. Thank heavens the yo-yoing up and down on the question of whether a stadium will be placed on the old thermal site has finally stopped. Good to see that the Mayor stuck by his guns and that construction will be privately rather than publicly funded.

This is welcome news for those of us who are baseball fans and property owners living in or near Downtown, especially those of us who already hold Sounds season tickets. So, play ball!

10/26/2005, 7:45 a.m. Update: The Tennessean reports this morning that there is a catch in the deal; the planned developers have not signed on to it. I can't imagine that the Sounds will have a difficult time getting developers for some prime downtown riverfront property. It sells itself.

The same article quotes Ben Cunningham of the lobbyist group Tennessee Tax Revolt[ing] as criticizing the deal because he says tax breaks should go to develop blighted areas. Over the weekend in a different context, the Tennessean referred to Mr. Cunningham as an "ethics activist." This morning they switched back again to identify him as an anti-tax leader. But since the stadium deal doesn't really involve raising taxes, perhaps the Tennessean's latest label for Mr. Cunningham is a touch out-of-school. If the reporters had been paying attention to Mr. Cunningham's eternal opposition to Metro Nashville administration, they might have played to the progressive advocacy of Nashville's dispossessed that he has donned for this story. Hence, in the context of the stadium story, Mr. Cunningham should be labeled a "blight fighter."

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