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[October 27th] -- Thus far, all of the renderings and computer animation of the Nationals' new home show one common theme: the stadium is going to be nice. Not great, not outstanding, not "monumental." Just nice. And that's what I thought too. That is, until I saw these elevation renderings.

We were told that our stadium was going to be our's alone; no brick, no black metal beams, no copper sheathed roofs. No sir; our stadium was all about glass and concrete, with rich, traditional exteriors that reflect D.C.'s history.


Take a look at the above rendering (click on it to see a larger image). Do you see anything that resembles what we were promised? The middle image shows the front of the stadium, yet the great majority of the exterior is a compilation of a little bit of this, and a little bit of that. One might say that the right side looks like something you'd expect to find in the rear of the old Bloomington stadium in Minnesota, or even Jarry Parc, Montreal's first attempt at a major league facility. If the intent of the architects was to create that "haphazard" steel and chain link fence aura of the past, then I guess I could accept it. Remember, though, this was to be a stadium of the future, a building as much a museum as a ball park.

I guess a little bit of glass here, a little bit of concrete there, and a whole lot of "stuff" strewn about is what we're going to get. I have to say that I'm disappointed. I can only hope that these renderings don't do the completed facility justice. I'm afraid, however, that the new stadium is a brick and mortar version of the laws that are passed in this town. By the time both sides do their "give and take," the end result, while palatable, isn't particularly attractive to either side.

I am surprised, considering the constant change of politicians and policy in this city, that RFK was able to be created and built with a minimum of harping from the politicos. I do remember that a group with a name something like the "D.C. Arts Commission" meddled now and then, changing little things without confusing the over-all vision the architects had for the place. I remember one particularly old lady with a fox around her neck complained on one of the local television stations that the stadium couldn't have those "awful light towers," and demanded that the lights be connected to the roof in some way. But when you took a step back and looked at the big picture, you could see what the architects were trying to achieve. The stadium was "balanced," with one side a carbon copy of the other. Sight lines were clean and unobstructed, and the entire stadium had a feel of openness throughout its confines (Remember, this is 1961 openness, far better than what was then availalable but certainly nothing like today's stadiums have).

I look at our new stadium and don't see this sense of unity, where every part of the stadium acts in unison with the rest. There is a break in the right field stand; why? Parts of the stadium are covered with glass, other are open and expose he stadium's skeleton; why? There are too many concepts built into the facility that are just "there," that don't seem to have any reason for being part of the plan.

And now, it seems all but certain that those unsightly parking garages are going to rise from the ground beyond the left field wall. Mayor Anthony Williams says he has "given up" trying to create a more alluring vista from within the park itself. Without Williams, and with the Lerner's demanding the "above-ground" garages, another nail in the ugly coffin has been hammered into place.

Don't get me wrong, the stadium is likely not going to get a disparaging moniker like Alaska did (remember Seward's folly?) but neither is it going to be a building that makes people go "oooh" and "aaah." And that's a shame; I'm pretty sure that's what $600 million dollars is supposed to buy.

World Series: Now, all you Tigers' fans shouldn't be getting all in a tizzy this morning, what with the Cardinals being up three games to one heading into game five tonight. Those of us near the age of fifty remember clearly that the Tigers were in the same position against the Cardinals in the 1968 World Series, yet they came back and took the crown by winning three games in a row. Mr. Motta and Mr. Berra were right, I haven't heard any large ladies crooning and it aint over because it aint over.

Curtis Granderson's faux pas in centerfield was reminiscent of Curt Flood's mis-step in the '68 series. In both cases, the mistake changed the flow of the game and allowed the other team to win. Those errors and mis-plays happen a dozen times a night during the regular season, but in the spot light that is the World Series, Granderson's fall will be played and replayed for decades to come. Willy Mays' "the catch" in the 1954 World Series is replayed hundreds of times each season, yet I think Ryan Zimmerman's over-the-shoulder catch 'n dive from earlier this season was a much more difficult catch.

One day, perhaps Zimmerman will make one of his patended "can you do that?" catches in the World Series. Then, the circle of life will be complete.

Li'l question. When does this temporary reroute become permanent (should I update the link on my site to point here now?)
go ahead and update the link. I've given up getting any help from the folks at blogger. As soon as I can figure out how to move the archives from the old site to the new one, I'll be closing the old one down.

Thanks el gran
I not sure what you were exspecting; did you really think were would have a stadium on par with PNC or AT&T park? Well I didn't, I just want a solid stadium that is clean, has good food and is in a good part of town. Personaly, overall I like the look of the park, though some things do bother me. I look at this the same way I look at the owners;. it is way to early to make a judgement, and we should wait and see.

well, yeah mario, I was expecting something like PNC, maybe even better. D.C. is one of the premier cities in the world, right?

I've been trying to keep from judging the place, but those elevations look spot on to me.

I think we deserved better.
Yes, we do deserved better; but I think we could do worst when you look at all the crap that surrounded the funding and building of it.

There is one fundemental reason why it would never live up PNC; the city its self. Sure we have a lot of preatty things, but it would be amazingly exspence to buy land near any of them. Also there isn't a nice skyline of skyscrappers, and the current site isn't close enough to the river to make that the back drop. So no matter how good the stadium, the setting won't bw as nice.

But I do belive that something better than parking garages behind the park. In fact, I rather they do what te Cards are doing at new Busch; make a ballpark village behind the stadium to further improve the fan exsperience.


PS- I wrote this in a hurry so spelling maybe off
I agree with all of that, my friend. I also think that PNC is by far the best park in the league. I could sit in a box seat and just stare at the city beyond the outfield for hours.
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