St. Louis NFL Stadium Plan Could Cost Taxpayers Millions More Than Anticipated


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Subsidizing Distraction

Government subsidizes this kind of distraction so you can vent by being angry at the opposite team instead of realizing how much they are screwing you. You might also feel relief, important, when "your team" wins, giving you that satisfaction you can't get out of fighting for your rights.
Oh yeah, and who do you think is going to get all the sweet overpaid construction contracts?

ASPER ACT more than 1 year ago

Comparing cities

If Minneapolis can do it, if Indianapolis can do it, if Kansas City can do it, if on-and-on can do it - St Louis BETTER do it - or, it's over.

Marvin schilling more than 1 year ago

I assume St. Louis Magazine knows it 2015 right now

Its 2015. 2015 is 40 years from now. Its called inflation.

I know St. Louis magazine is opposed to the Rams staying in St. Louis. I have subscribed to the magazine for years and I have read the op-eds. But if the city of St. Louis cant afford a 15 million dollar payment in the year 2051, then we will have more to worry about than the St. Louis Rams. I believe if the rams leave it will be one further nail in the coffin for this city...

Ryan Watson more than 1 year ago

It isn't a matter of "can afford it"

It is a matter of "is it a good investment?". Does the presence of the Rams provide $210+ M over the next 30 years over what it would take in without them?

Dan from MV more than 1 year ago


If the city ends up paying for this stadium, it will be a nail in the coffin of the city. St. Louis is better off without the Rams.

Dan more than 1 year ago

Bigger Picture

Ray, Have you found any other private investors who will put in over 500 million into the downtown river front?
Have you found any other projects that will bring people downtown to what is now a completely derelict part of the river front? I guess youd like to see the NFL leave St. Louis and let the city spend the money theyll be on the hook for in other ways, we all know how great the city spends their money now. Instead of throwing money into a project with over 500 million in private investment you would rather have the Rams leave. I'm sorry but arguing against this only hurts the city of St. Louis and its residents. There is a net tax revenue benefit for this investment, what is the problem? Do you think the City will be better off without and NFL team? If so you cannot even consider yourself an unbiased operator.

joe more than 1 year ago

Of course it will

No question the city will be better off without an NFL team, and there will be a major tax revenue loss on this "investment".

Dan more than 1 year ago

Of course all the gung-ho types live in the county...

How many of these gung-ho commenters live in St. Louis City? We city folks are on the hook for your new stadium, not you. Take a look at our roads and other infrastructure. Take a look at our schools. We'd rather have those updated than cater to a team that's been holding a sword over our heads.

Steph more than 1 year ago

Gun-Ho City Dweller

I live in the city, and I want this stadium. I'll gladly pay the taxes. North St. Louis has been an eyesore since I can remember. This stadium would revitalize an area that has plagued St. Louis for decades. I'm so tired of a vocal minority claiming that the city doesn't want this project. I'm not the only urban dweller whose worried about the fate of St. Louis if the NFL leaves. And if you think we're going to magically dump $215 million into city schools if this project doesn't go through, you're fooling yourself.

Ashley more than 1 year ago

Edward jones dome hasn't revitalized the area.

The Edward jones dome is 3 blocks from the proposed stadium, it hasn't the area. Why do you think wasting a billion on a new stadium next door will. I say put it in chesterfield and have county pay for it if they want it so bad. There's plenty of parking and it's still a flood plain.

Leland more than 1 year ago

Need Context, Will Travel

"In real-life history, as opposed to rosy projections, initial years of sellouts and then on-the-field success gave way to declining attendance when the team performed poorly (and long before there was any thought that it might try to leave town)."

This simply isn't true at all. I can remember people talking about, speculating on, and stressing over the 2015 clause since as far back as 2007. The connection between the fanbase and franchise has allways strained under that spectre.

The "poor performance that Hartmann so conveniently gleans over in his argument contained the worst 5 year run of football in NFL history. Statistically speaking, it's harder for a team to go to the playoffs for 5 straight years than to win 15 games in 5 seasons.

The Task Force has every reason to believe in their projections if they put even a halfway decent produce on the field and create a NFL worthy gameday experience for the fans.

Jim more than 1 year ago


Many franchises go thru similar stretches, some worse, like Detroit. THEY have an excuse for a poor fan base, YOU do not. The Rams in LA went thru a bad several years from the mid-50s to the mid 60s and drew 100,000 repeatedly in the Coliseum! When they were moved to the ballpark in Anaheim and dismantled from a Super Bowl team to absolute junk, it was a demotion to their old fans in LA, they didn't draw AND THEY WERE MOVED. NO WHINING, ST LOUIS. You have a solid team at the moment and from week to week you have either the WORST fan attendance or the 31st. Stop your whining and say goodbye, YOU do not deserve them.

NativeAngeleno more than 1 year ago

The Rams Never Drew 100K at the Coliseum

I went too many games at the Coliseum with my dad in the 70's. It was never sold out. The NFL wasn't that popular back then. They erected bleachers so fans could be closer in the one end zone. That said I want the Rams back in LA. St. Louis had an oportunity to upgrade the EJD and didn't. Kroenke doesn't need public money. Winner!

LARamsFaninOR more than 1 year ago

Big surprise

The risk will be socialized while the profit is privatized. Let them move.

Fritz more than 1 year ago

Your LA Memory is faulty

The Rams did draw over 100K fans at the coliseum on multiple occasions. In fact, the Los Angeles Rams held the NFL single game attendance record of 102,368 that stood from 1957 through 2009 (Mexico City now has the record). Seating capacity was reduced to 94K in 1967. The 1975 NFC Championship Game between the Los Angeles Rams and Dallas Cowboys had an attendance of 88,919, which is still the largest crowd for a conference championship game.

Morales more than 1 year ago

LA Attendance Irrelevant

True. The Rams did indeed draw 100K to games at the Coliseum 50 - 60 years ago. That is in no way relevant to what is happening today in either city. This game is not, nor ever has been, an issue regarding flagging fan support in STL. That is significantly lower on the revenue generation totem pole compared to TV revenues, luxury suites, premium seating and merchandising. The owners, trust me on this, don't give a hoot how many folks attended Rams games decades ago. BTW....the original poster should check out the Rams attendance in LA during their playoff runs in the 80's. Not good. And their last 5 years in Anaheim were pathetic, too. Pot calling the kettle black, don't you think?

MC Hammerhead more than 1 year ago

Post Dispatch is in conflict with your report. Interesting timing! I look forward to the post clarifying and showing your hidden agenda

Your a hack! The data published by the Post Dispatch is in conflict with your report. Interesting timing! I look forward to the post clarifying and showing your hidden agenda

J.butler more than 1 year ago


St. Louis magazine has been opposed to the Rams staying here. Just look at the op-eds. If it was a MLS soccer team they would have a different opinion I am sure.

Ryan Watson more than 1 year ago

so what?! The postdispatch cherrypicks its facts and ignores the bad

Your self-comforting propaganda of choice looks on the bright side of the stadium but the difference is stlouismag is uncovering facts more contingent on the team moving, facts the owners will take into account when Stan presents them to them in January. Since Aug 25 you've lost public funding in the legislature---it ain't in the budget!---and is on the verge of losing the city's public funding. Since the state's public money is dependent on an NFL owner first stating in writing his team will play in the stadium, that eliminates $450 million more from the stadium budget. Money is its lifeblood and it's gone dry. It's dead. Get real, like stlouis mag. Be honest with yourselves, not self-deceiving.

NativeAngeleno more than 1 year ago

Average Attendance

You mention this year's current average, while failing to mention that it has been caused by talk of the Rams leaving for the past couple of years. Up until 2007, we averaged north of 63,000. It only then began to drop off because that is when the worst 5 year stretch in NFL history was beginning. Journalism is about reporting the facts, not picking bits of information to fit your story.

Nick more than 1 year ago

This Doesn't Jive with State Credit App.

This story doesn't jive with the Task Force state credit application. It shows all funding sources. No extra $215M required. Just $6M per year. See front page and page D6.

Gary Kreie more than 1 year ago

This miss information by people against the stadium

Gary Kreie you are totally right I see this as a ploy by politicians that are against the new stadium to deceive the public to believe the cost of the new stadium will cost tan payer's more money this is a untrue story with no merit or proof of truth.

Dennis Springerley more than 1 year ago

Your numbers don't jive with tax credit application

The Post Dispatch published the entire application for tax credits for the stadium. That report summarized the entire funding plan for the new stadium. It show no more than 6% is required from the city to meet the total cost obligation. See page D6 at this link. It does project that the city revenues will go up at 3%, but it isn't asking for that money to fund the stadium. Just $6M per year. The table is trying to point out that the city could get a windfall. Could you explain why your numbers don't jive with this application written by the task force? This shows full stadium funding with no more than $6M per year required from the city through 2051.

Gary Kreie more than 1 year ago

Numbers Don't Add Up

I wouldn't go by everything in the tax credit document. They say 50 new full-time jobs will be created with an average salary of $75,000. That simply is not going to be true.

DC more than 1 year ago

Nice Hit Piece Against Stadium

If this is what St. Louis magazine alleges to be journalism we should all beware of its contents. There are reasonable arguments to be made against the stadium project, but this completely one-sided account analyzing numbers you have no access to is a joke. It also demonstrates a lack of understanding of the process. The stadium is designed to produce significant increases in corporate revenues through suites and club seating that the dome cannot. Other sponsorship opportunities are built in to generate more money. They are utilizing 20 years of knowledge accumulated through trial and error in pro sports. I also find it difficult to believe there was no comment on such cases allegations from Peacock et al. Sounds like you called them 10 minutes before you printed. It's a total hit piece. If you want to do an editorial, call it that. Don't try to paint it as journalism.

The five more than 1 year ago

"Trial and error"

The only "trial and error" for stadium building in pro sports is that the billionaire that owns the team makes billions while the taxpayers get fleeced.

Fritz more than 1 year ago


You failed to mention it. It's about 3% annually. Seems like the task force is doing great and a great project for St. Louis.

Stevo more than 1 year ago

schools are a disaster...

but you want to give 100s of millions of dollars to a billionaire that hates St Louis and if he moved his team to LA it would increase in value by 100s of millions of dollars.

Jesus Satan more than 1 year ago


An Ivy League business team - I believe it was Harvard - concluded that the stadium deal would be a net profit for the city.

Yoyo Ma more than 1 year ago

But not really...

If you actually look as peer-reviewed research, economists are pretty clear that they aren't worth the public money it takes to subsidize and that the economical impact is negligee. Those funds could be better spent elsewhere and get a better ROI.

Too much free time more than 1 year ago

You fail

"Those funds could be better spent elsewhere." You must not pay attention, because by LAW, the funds for the stadium CANNOT be spent on anything BUT an NFL stadium. They can't be spent on schools, roads, police, the zoo, parades, reading lessons for you. If the money is not spent on a stadium, it disappears. Poof, gone, forever.

Facts more than 1 year ago

But, if the Rams leave won't have a $6M payment to be made to service the debt for EJD past 2021. That means you would have revenue potentially available for other purposes (roads/schools) if voters vote to extend the tax measure.

Dan from MV more than 1 year ago

Buit if the Rams Leave

My problem with this notion is that I don't believe in the politicians and law makers enough to actually make the right decision with the supposed extra funds that would be kept if the team leaves. Especially within the city of St. Louis,

BC more than 1 year ago

re: research

that Ivy League business team was nothing more than a kid from chesterfield and his rosy support piece with yet again overly optimistic forecasting.
That was not sanctioned by Harvard University, and it did not go through any peer-review process. Yet many from St. Louis point to the piece as evidence. Lovely. Prefer this more nuanced piece to the study showing a "net profit for the city"

Noor D'bherg more than 1 year ago

The Federal Reserve begs to Differ

"In fact, research has shown that subsidizing sports facilities usually does not affect a city's growth and, in some cases, may even hurt growth since funds are being diverted from alternatives with higher returns. In a 1994 study that examined economic growth over a 30-year period in 48 metropolitan areas, Robert Baade found that of the 32 metro areas that had a change in the number of sports teams, only two showed a significant relationship between the presence of a sports team and real per-capita personal income growth. These cities were Indianapolis, which saw a positive relationship, and Baltimore, which had a negative relationship.

Moreover, Baade found that of the 30 metro areas where the stadium or arena was built or refurbished in the previous 10 years, only three areas showed a significant relationship between the presence of a stadium and real per-capita personal income growth. And in all three cases—St. Louis, San Francisco/Oakland and Washington, D.C.—the relationship was negative.

The "Build It and They Will Come" Syndrome

Cities go to great lengths to lure a new team to town or to keep the home team home. They feel compelled to compete with other cities that offer new or updated facilities; otherwise, the home team might make good on its threat to leave. The weight of economic evidence, however, shows that taxpayers spend a lot of money and ultimately don't get much back. And when this paltry return is compared with other potential uses of the funds, the investment, almost always, seems unwise. Still, cities eagerly propose spending the funds, and taxpayers willingly support the proposals. Why? Because home teams strike an emotional chord with the community—that intangible "civic pride" is evidently a powerful force. Thus, attacks on stadium proposals, no matter how persuasive, likely fall on deaf ears. More-convincing arguments would spell out the civic initiatives—education, housing and transportation, for example—that are passed over or forgotten in favor of a new stadium."


Mark Plattner more than 1 year ago

Blind eyes to progress

Does anyone recall what Washington Avenue looked like before the dome was built? The dome and convention center most certainly have improved the surrounding area.

Ray hates progress more than 1 year ago


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