Thursday, September 06, 2007

Soccer instead of roving bands of Black guys

Let's call it the country music theory: If you build something that this City's Black people might not typically want to participate in then it's usually received with open arms.

Like it or not, there's no arguing with the fact that once Black people started shopping (and robbing people) at Bannister Mall, the place turned South with a quickness.

However, the folks who want transform the Bannister Mall location into a soccer stadium have high hopes for their plan:

A sweeping proposal that would transform the depressed Bannister Mall area into a destination anchored by a soccer stadium for the Kansas City Wizards is before city officials.

The first phase of the Three Trails Redevelopment plan, which will formally be filed today with city officials, calls for an 18,500-seat, city-owned stadium to be built near Interstate 435, where the closed mall now stands.

It would be accompanied by a 12-field, tournament-style soccer complex; a 250-room hotel attached to the stadium; 609,000 square feet of retail space; and 610,500 square feet of office space.
Obviously, a project of this magnitude is going to request some TIF money and Funkhouser seems open to the prospect. However, let's be clear that this is South Kansas City or South East KC at best . . . Therefore supporting this would STILL break the promise the Mayor offered that THE FIRST TIF proposal should come from the Eastside. But in only a few short months KC has already seen that the guy's word doesn't stand for much.

Nevertheless, a soccer complex isn't a completely bad idea and seems to follow the "Country Music" aspect of KC development. Again, the rules for "Country Music" construction in KC require an attraction that typically (or stereotypically) would not attract a predominantly Black audience. For instance: Very few minorities seem to be aficionados of modern (poser) art so naturally KC has made the Crossroads a shinning example of "urban renewal" which is code for "Oh, gosh white people are coming back!!!" Even if most of them are simply JoCo posers looking to go slumming for a night and pretending to buy art. Soccer, might make the perfect cover of a similar sort. While soccer is popular worldwide, I don't think it has made much headway into African-American communities. Therefore, this could be considered a "safe" development given that time and again white people in KC have PROVEN they don't want to share breathing space with Black people and any development which deviates from KC's self-imposed/de facto segregation doesn't stand a chance.

So, if the Soccer complex keeps the suburban demographic and, just like most KC construction projects, eschews minorities . . . Then maybe the thing might have a chance. It's a gamble developers are willing to take with your TIF money.


Chimpo said...

I'm not so sure about this not attracting minorities. Have you ever been to a Wizards game? That's the only place I have ever heard the Spanish version of "Proud Mary."

Anonymous said...

If you build it, and they destroy it, you ain't gonna build it again.

Anonymous said...

Pretty much every Wizards game I heave been to has a large brown skin demographic. I think it's good idea.

Anonymous said...

Lets see, you have perfectly sound, attractive buildings, good location, sound infrastructure and still Bannister Mall failed spectactularly. Now you tear down all the buildings, build a soccer stadium there and all of a sudden retail will thrive. Right, just like around the Truman Sports complex.

thepaintman said...

Build apartment buildings. Bannister Mall failed. This is where most all the poor people live.
Soccer stadium once again is a waste of taxpayer money just like the Sprint Concert Hall.

Anonymous said...

Tony, for a mexican, you sure don't know shit about the demographics of soccer, or football as its known worldwide.

Anonymous said...

I think I'm the only person that likes going to wizards games at Arrowhead.