Venue News & Notes: New Marlins Stadium Takes Shape

The Roman Colosseum it’s not, but it is round. The publicly financed, $634 million Florida Marlins baseball stadium is rapidly taking shape in East Little Havana, where its tall roof-support columns already loom like alien monoliths over the modest apartment houses around it. After seven months of construction, work is about a quarter done and “on track’’ for the scheduled April 2012 opening, team officials and their contractors said Tuesday. They led a media tour of the stadium, which occupies the site of the demolished — and also round — Orange Bowl at Northwest Sixth Street and 14th Avenue in Miami. “We will be ready to play ball,” said Sid Perkins, construction manager for the joint-venture contractor, Hunt/Moss. “There is no doubt”…

…A June series between the Mets and Marlins will be moved from Miami to Puerto Rico, according to a report by The Associated Press this week. Neither team has confirmed the story yet, but both will be on a group conference call organized by Major League Baseball this week. The Marlins will remain the home team at San Juan’s Hiram Bithorn Stadium, once the part-time home of the Montreal Expos…

…The San Jose, CA, City Council this week will consider whether to move forward on a proposed Major League Soccer stadium project, which may bring much-needed revenue to the city but also has neighbors worried how a sports facility will disrupt the community. The council will decide whether to rezone the property for stadium use and whether to adopt an almost 500-page report detailing how the stadium — with 15,000 seats — would affect the environment, including noise and traffic impacts on surrounding neighborhoods…

…The first thing you notice about Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ, is how big it appears from the outside. As you approach the stadium, the new home of the Red Bulls of Major League Soccer, it rises on the horizon like a giant floating silver soufflé. The stadium looks as if it could easily hold 50,000 fans, maybe more. Its size is magnified by the enormous adjacent lots that have been cleared to make way for a series of shops and condominiums that are part of a plan to revitalize the town. The roof, which billows over the stadium, also masks what turns out to be a cozy stadium…

…The general manager of the Times Union Center in Albany, NY, has stopped negotiations with the Portland, ME, Pirates hockey team. Bob Belber told the Portland Press Herald that he has broken off talks with Pirates CEO/managing owner Brian Petrovek. Belber said he is in discussions with the owner of another American Hockey League team. The Pirates’ lease with the Cumberland County Civic Center expires at the end of April, and Petrovek has been negotiating with county officials while also weighing the option of moving the team to Albany…

…David Sullivan, co-owner Premier League’s West Ham United, has attacked plans to convert London’s Olympic Stadium into an athletics venue as an “appalling waste of public money.” The £537 million site is set to be reduced from 80,000 seats to 25,000 after 2012, with athletics as its primary use. But Sullivan says the only “sensible option” is to opt for a 60,000-capacity venue that West Ham could rent: “To build an 80,000-seat stadium and reduce it to 25,000 for athletics makes no sense at all.”

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