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California Great America (CGA) Discussion Thread


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I pass by the park frequently, and still can't figure out which parking lot they intend on using for the stadium..

 

The proposed site is the overflow lot which is approximately east/northeast of the main parking area. Here is a pic I took when I visted last month....its located across that grassy area.

 

For reference, I was standing about here when I took that photo.

 

I think its funny how they complain about the park being a nuisance (even thought it was there before the majority of the development) yet having thousands of cars and rowdy fans tailgaiting isnt? Hmmm. The big thing with stadiums is that football is only a portion of its revenue stream. It also needs to draw in concerts and other events it help pay the bills in the off-season. This also can have a negative impact on the park.

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As far as football goes, most teams usually only have 8 or so home games a year, excluding playoffs and preseason. How much of an issue would this really cause for the park. Six Flags America kinda has to deal with the Ravens and Redskins both within a 1 hour drive of the park albeit that is pretty close to the end of the season anyhow, and they seem to do just fine.

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I think its funny how they complain about the park being a nuisance (even thought it was there before the majority of the development) yet having thousands of cars and rowdy fans tailgaiting isnt? Hmmm. The big thing with stadiums is that football is only a portion of its revenue stream. It also needs to draw in concerts and other events it help pay the bills in the off-season. This also can have a negative impact on the park.

 

I'm guessing the surrounding offices are pretty empty on weekends.

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As far as football goes, most teams usually only have 8 or so home games a year, excluding playoffs and preseason. How much of an issue would this really cause for the park. Six Flags America kinda has to deal with the Ravens and Redskins both within a 1 hour drive of the park albeit that is pretty close to the end of the season anyhow, and they seem to do just fine.

 

That's not even close to the same thing. CGA will have all of the traffic issues and the stadium built in their parking lot. People attending Ravens games don't park in SFA's parking lot.

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As far as football goes, most teams usually only have 8 or so home games a year, excluding playoffs and preseason. How much of an issue would this really cause for the park. Six Flags America kinda has to deal with the Ravens and Redskins both within a 1 hour drive of the park albeit that is pretty close to the end of the season anyhow, and they seem to do just fine.

 

The only thing that's been up in the air is if the Oakland Raiders will ALSO be sharing this stadium - which would double the football events and quadruple the number of problems for the neighborhood (Then again, I'm a niners fan.)

 

According to public filings, the SF 49ers spent approximately $500 per registered voter to make this thing pass. The opposition spent approximately $1/ea.

 

I still find it absolutely ironic that NO ONE has brought up the fact that this stadium lies directly under the flight path of 30R 12L at San Jose International. The park had a hard enough time building Drop Zone and it's about 1/4 mile West off the flight path.

 

If the jets are on final approach from the North, they'll be throttling up and down right above 70k people during games. During good weather, they'll be at full throttle on takeoff to the North. Check it out on Google Earth - just trace the runways to the Bicentennial Lot (Overflow parking)

 

Is this bad for the park? Probably. The value of the land just dropped significantly. CF could see this as a major loss - hell they nearly had a fire sale earlier this year - $50 mil. for everything. (That's a bargain!) Anyone want to start pooling a few bucks?

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Most stadiums do, but one or two parking structure(s) isn't/aren't nearly enough. Not to mention, I don't know about California laws, but I know you aren't allowed to tailgate in parking garages/structures in Pittsburgh.
If its going to be the premier, open-air sports and entertainment venue in the world, shouldn't that include it's own parking structure?

Why does the stadium need a car park?

 

Here in S.E Queensland, stadiums don't have car parks (Most stadiums in Australia don't actually). The way it works is that whenever a major game or concert is on, your event ticket also includes your public transport to and from the game, and extra trains/buses/ferries are scheduled to deal with demand.

 

From what I can see, the stadium will be at the intersection of two rail lines, so surely it would be more cost effective to get people coming to and from the game via these, rather then spending lots of money and land to build multideck car parks that only get used a few times per year.

 

You could couple this with some sort of parking restriction on game days.

People who do choose to drive to the game would be charged significantly more than what is normally charged to park at CGA.

If you were intending on into CGA on a game day you could show your receipt, and the difference would be refunded.

That way, the car park would be freed up for CGA and game attendees would be discouraged from using it.

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^ To our detriment, things simply don't work that way here in the states. The automobile, particularly in California, is the chosen mode of transportation for the vast majority of people. The public transit infrastructure to accomodate your suggestions simply does not exist here.

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The public transit infrastructure to accomodate your suggestions simply does not exist here

???

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_America-Santa_Clara_Station

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_America_%28VTA%29

 

Thing is, they are spending hundreds of millions on a stadium, so infrastructure improvements should logically occur at the same time. The stadium owners can't just expect to plonk it down without thinking of these things. Furthermore, I think my original point still stands...It would be significantly cheaper to upgrade the two train adjacent stations with extra platforms to deal with game day crowds etc, and perhaps even go for even more capacity with a bus station similar in format to the ones at Suncorp Stadium and the Brisbane Cricket Ground, then it would be to try and build huge multideck car parks (That would suck anyway due to traffic congestion when everyone tries to leave at the end of the game)

 

I mean, fair enough, other stadiums might have been built around the notion of providing acres of car parking, but if it's a new stadium, a with an amusement park next door to worry about, and a virtual clean slate then why would you do things the "wrong way" ?

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The public transit infrastructure to accomodate your suggestions simply does not exist here

???

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_America-Santa_Clara_Station

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_America_%28VTA%29

 

Thing is, they are spending hundreds of millions on a stadium, so infrastructure improvements should logically occur at the same time. The stadium owners can't just expect to plonk it down without thinking of these things. Furthermore, I think my original point still stands...It would be significantly cheaper to upgrade the two train adjacent stations with extra platforms to deal with game day crowds etc, and perhaps even go for even more capacity with a bus station similar in format to the ones at Suncorp Stadium and the Brisbane Cricket Ground, then it would be to try and build huge multideck car parks (That would suck anyway due to traffic congestion when everyone tries to leave at the end of the game)

 

I mean, fair enough, other stadiums might have been built around the notion of providing acres of car parking, but if it's a new stadium, a with an amusement park next door to worry about, and a virtual clean slate then why would you do things the "wrong way" ?

 

I see what you're saying and it does sound like a logical idea, but I just don't think it would work. People in America with the exception of some people in large cities (ex. New York City) drive cars everywhere. I just can't see the majority of people taking mass transit unless it was required. I don't know much about that mass transit system you were referring to, but that probably isn't equipped for 70,000 people to ride either.

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The public transit infrastructure to accomodate your suggestions simply does not exist here

???

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_America-Santa_Clara_Station

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_America_%28VTA%29

 

Thing is, they are spending hundreds of millions on a stadium, so infrastructure improvements should logically occur at the same time. The stadium owners can't just expect to plonk it down without thinking of these things. Furthermore, I think my original point still stands...It would be significantly cheaper to upgrade the two train adjacent stations with extra platforms to deal with game day crowds etc, and perhaps even go for even more capacity with a bus station similar in format to the ones at Suncorp Stadium and the Brisbane Cricket Ground, then it would be to try and build huge multideck car parks (That would suck anyway due to traffic congestion when everyone tries to leave at the end of the game)

 

I mean, fair enough, other stadiums might have been built around the notion of providing acres of car parking, but if it's a new stadium, a with an amusement park next door to worry about, and a virtual clean slate then why would you do things the "wrong way" ?

 

Trust me, I find no fault in your suggestions. The trouble is, even in more progressive areas of our state like the SF Bay Area, the mindset to support your type of proposals is still held by a relatively few people. I'm not trying to defend that notion, only relating that it is the current state of affairs. Californians in particular are very used to being able to come and go as they please without being tied to the constraints of a bus, ferry, or rail schedule. Right or wrong, it is a big part of the culture here. Public transportation has made significant strides here in the past 20 years or so, but it pales in comparison to many other areas of the world. America's relationship with, and dependence on, the automobile has very deep roots. Reliable and convenient public transit just isn't the priority that you might expect it would be.

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^ Not if CGA is leveled and turned into another office park. As it stands now, yes, it does seem like a pretty small area for as grandiose as they're trying to make this new stadium sound. The truth is, that while this approval is a step in making the stadium a reality, it is far from a done-deal. A similar plan was hatched and well on its way for a new stadium at Candlestick point many years ago, but all that eventually unraveled. In this current economy, I really have my doubts that this new stadium will be built unless it's to be a shared venue for both the Raiders and 49ers. Of course that would be even worse for CGA. There's still much left to unfold before we can ultimately determine how CGA will be affected.

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Was just looking at satellite photos of CGA and the possible building site. It's really too bad the 49ers can't train in their own stadium, pave the parking lot and possibly buy out that soccer field on the corner of Tasman and that neighborhood street.

 

Regarding CGA's parking, how full does that lot get on busier days? How full could it get during a 49er's game?

 

On the note of public transportation, it's really too bad there wasn't an offsite parking and have some form of mass transit take them? On my behalf, if I were going to an A's game or Raiders, I'd just hop on Bart and avoid the traffic as there's a station right at the Colosseum, and a large walkway directly to the stadium.

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I just can't see the majority of people taking mass transit unless it was required.

Then don't give people a choice, and make it required. If game tickets had it printed on them that they included free express transport, and it was heavily advertised that the stadium didn't have parking, then that would be a pretty strong motivator as to what was expected of people.

 

I don't know much about that mass transit system you were referring to, but that probably isn't equipped for 70,000 people to ride either.

This new stadium would actually be in a better position than some of the stadiums here since it already is serviced by rail. The 50,000 seat AAMI Stadium in Adelaide is only serviced by buses:

AAMI Stadium has a bus terminal for public buses from Adelaide and surrounding suburbs; approximately 1,000 buses are in service to transport spectators to and from the stadium for football games. For "Showdown" matches (local derbies) the number of buses is doubled.

Check out this aerial image:

http://maps.google.com.au/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&q=Aami+Stadium+Bus+Access,+West+Lakes+South+Australia+5021&sll=-25.335448,135.745076&sspn=55.047272,135.263672&ie=UTF8&cd=1&geocode=FVPI6_0do01BCA&split=0&hq=&hnear=Aami+Stadium+Bus+Access,+West+Lakes+South+Australia+5021&ll=-34.879823,138.497359&spn=0.003147,0.008256&t=h&z=18

That little loop of roadway to right hand side of the stadium is able to do the same job as acres of car parking.

 

Californians in particular are very used to being able to come and go as they please without being tied to the constraints of a bus, ferry, or rail schedule.

Event services don't typically have a complex timetable to understand, it's pretty much a simple statement along the lines of "Services run every 5-10 minutes, from X hours before till X hours after the game".

 

I just don't think it would work. People in America with the exception of some people in large cities (ex. New York City) drive cars everywhere.

I'm calling shenanigans on that one. Australians tend to drive everywhere too, (We certainly don't have the level of public transport as in Europe/Japan) but it's just accepted that major events are one thing where you leave the car at home, and people know that taking public transport is faster/cheaper than trying to get through the inevtiable traffic jams that come with major events and paying extortionate amounts for parking.

 

It's just crap that CGA should have to suffer when there a proven solutions to getting people to and from major events in a way that minimises the impact on the neighbours.

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I'd like to point out that public transportation is used by thousands upon thousands of people for Pittsburgh Steeler games. There are so many people that use it, I had to change my normal gate to a different one because of the size of the crowd. They park across the river, then take a Gateway Clipper Boat to Heinz Field. Now granted they are only going the small distance of across a river, but it's still mass transit nonetheless.

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I just can't see the majority of people taking mass transit unless it was required.

Then don't give people a choice, and make it required. If game tickets had it printed on them that they included free express transport, and it was heavily advertised that the stadium didn't have parking, then that would be a pretty strong motivator as to what was expected of people.

That just will not work in the states. I've seen parking run out at stadiums before and people just park anywhere (stores, front lawns, ect. al) I mean, the entire 50 mile radius of all the Chicago, IL sports teams can take public transportation for 5 bucks and the lots at $25 plus a pop are always full.

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Was just looking at satellite photos of CGA and the possible building site. It's really too bad the 49ers can't train in their own stadium, pave the parking lot and possibly buy out that soccer field on the corner of Tasman and that neighborhood street.

 

If they practiced and played on the same field from May/June (OTA's) to January, the field would be a complete mess, assuming they go with a natural grass surface.

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I mean, the entire 50 mile radius of all the Chicago, IL sports teams can take public transportation for 5 bucks and the lots at $25 plus a pop are always full.

5 Bucks...not free.

That just will not work in the states. I've seen parking run out at stadiums before and people just park anywhere (stores, front lawns, ect. al)

The roads within reasonable radius of stadiums here are set up as special traffic areas (eg this), with 15 minute parking enforced. Given there are plenty of police on patrol for major events anyway it means violators (Including people who illegally park on private property) are dealt with fairly quickly (Either fined or towed)

 

These 'it wont work' arguments are absolute cop outs. If you enforced the traffic restrictions properly, then people would have no choice but to comply....even if "people" like to drive everywhere, they aren't above the law.

If they followed international best practice, people would find they could get to the games easier, CGA gets to operate uninterrupted, and less money gets spent all up on the project since parking garages aren't needed.

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^It doesn't matter whether it's free or they pay you $20 cash. Americans, especially Californians, generally *hate* public transport and won't use it. Building a football stadium without sufficient parking is unthinkable here. There is just no will to enact the scheme you're describing with the police and all. Not to mention there could be serious legal hurdles to it.

 

Back to the actual topic, it sounds like this deal is contingent on the 49ers raising a ton of money, which is very difficult in the present environment. This may still not come to pass.

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