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Pontiac Silverdome not worth what it once was

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pontiac-silverdome-sale.jpgThe Pontiac Silverdome, site of countless amazing runs by Lions great Barry Sanders and MHSAA football championship games, has depreciated in value.

A lot.

An unidentified Toronto-based group submitted the winning bid for the property with a paltry offer of $583,000. It's pretty minuscule when you consider that the Silverdome cost $55.7 million to build.

We're talking about an 80,300-seat stadium that hosted Super Bowl XVI. We're talking about a place that saw 93,000 rabid fans file in for Wrestlemania in 1987 -- the largest indoor sporting event in American history.

How do you put a price tag on those memories?

Apparently, very easily.

The auctioneer says the winning group plans to refurbish the old girl and make it into a haven for professional soccer.

But, a black-owned development group has filed an injunction to stop the sale, citing discrimination and breach of contract.

They say their group were in negotiations until the end, when they suddenly broke off. Their plan was to convert the property into a racetrack.

Pontiac officials say it may take as long as 45 days for the deal to be finalized.

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6 Comments

The Silverdome is not an "$80,300 seat stadium", it's an 80,300 seat stadium. Also, the Silverdome hosted Super Bowl XVI, not Super Bowl XII. Super Bowl XII was played in the Superdome, not the Silverdome.

For the group that filed for an injunction, to the sale of the silverdome to the toronto firm, Their plans for a professional soccer field will not fly in this area. They will lose money and be forced to sell. Meanwhile the sale helps Pontiac.
As for horse racing in the silverdome! That many horses with that mush rear output in such a developed community area would force me to file an injunction and oppose permits being issued.
Sanitary issues would definately arise.

What is wrong with the leadership of Pontiac?
Tax payers paid $55 million dollars for the Silver Dome and once the Lions moved the city 'leaders' let it go vacant for years, then sell it for $583,000 (1% of the cost) in a backroom, closed door "auction". Before the consumation of this sale the Attorney General needs to investigate this deal and the process that the Pontiac officials used.
An investigation needs to be conducted to determine if the Pontiac leadership acted criminally or whether they are simply incompetent.

I have to say that both of these ideas are absolutely moronic. A soccer team will fail, and no way will it's revenues be able to sustain the 1.3 million per year it takes just to "maintain" the facility, not dress it up, but simply maintain basic operating functions. To me, the land is worth more then the building, from a fiscal point of view. The building itself is a piece of crap if you have ever been, its basically a giant piece of concrete with a tarp over it. If anyone had half a brain in the D, one of those guys trying to break ground on a movie studio in Allen Park, would have simply ponied up the cash, and boom instant land for a studio as well as the Silverdome, which you could have converted into the largest sound stage in North America.

Yea soccer is not a big sport in this area but it is still growing. Next door in auburn hills one of the biggest soccer complexes in this area was built holding 2 full sizes soccer fields, Ultimate Soccer. Metro Detroit holds some of the most elite soccer clubs in the mid-west region, Vardar, Metro-stars, and Livonia Wolves. It is a rising sport in this area but people fail to see it. There have been many failed soccer teams here also like the rockers and the express back in the 70's. Detroit also co-host a semi-professional soccer team with Windsor called the Border Stars. Detroit is currently the host of the Detroit Ignition.

Yes you may believe that soccer will not make it here in the city dose not mean you cant give it a chance. If the MLS could sign David Beckham to play for an American soccer club than it is possible for a soccer team to develop attention in Detroit. If people would be less stubborn and actually sit down and understand the game while they watch it, it might develop attention. The FIFA World Cup, which was also played at the Silverdome in '94, is one of the most watched sports event in the world. Coming from a college student saying that its amazing to see the majority of a student body glued to the television screen during a FIFA match, I believe its quite impressive.

In this country soccer is given a bad rep. In High School my soccer team was kicked off the game field the day before a rivalry match because the band needed to practice. This is because the older generations grew up on football, it was their past time. Playing football myself I heard what football coaches called us soccer players like footfaries, nancyboys, and communists just to name a few. Like football once soccer can be called a"social" event the popularity will soar. When you ask a student fan at a high school football game the score of the game after it is over 9 times out of 10 the student will say I don't know but i think we won. People see a football game as the thing to do on a Friday night. This is because schools don't advertise for soccer. If a high school made a social event out of soccer I believe interest would soar.

It looks like a great deal until you remember that this stadium is located in Pontiac, MI and not Detroit. It's doomed to a life of mediocre tractor pulls and flea markets.

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