Venue News: MLB All-Star Game Awarded to Citi Field; Seattle Announces Arena Agreement

Major League Baseball announced that next year’s All-Star Game will be held at Citi Field. The Mets were expected to be awarded the game after the Yankees hosted it in 2008, the last year the old Yankee Stadium and Shea Stadium were open. This will be the second time the Mets will act as hosts of the game; the first was in 1964, the year Shea Stadium opened. The formal announcement is late in coming. In years past, MLB would announce the host and then formalize the details with the host city. All-Star Games have become so elaborate, though, that the league now negotiates many of the details with the potential host city before announcing the event…

…At this rate, Citi Field might see a home run derby before it receives a final sign-off from the New York City Department of Buildings. Unmentioned in Mayor Bloomberg’s All-Star announcement was the embarrassing fact that the three-year-old stadium in Queens still hasn’t received a certificate of occupancy from the city. The stadium has a temporary certificate, which means it is safe and legal to occupy. Last year, when the Wall Street Journal first reported on Citi Field’s unresolved status, city officials said the cash-strapped team had failed to occupy more than 20,000 square feet of retail space, leaving a significant portion of the facility empty…

…Seattle and King County’s top leaders Wednesday announced an agreement with hedge-fund manager Chris Hansen to build a $490 million sports and entertainment arena in Sodo, sending the proposal to their respective councils to decide if the plan’s financing is solid and if added arena traffic will harm Sodo’s industrial economy. Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn and King County Executive Dow Constantine praised the agreement as containing unprecedented protections for taxpayers and leveraging upward of $800 million in private investments from Hansen and his investment group, ArenaCo. The group will contribute $290 million to the arena construction and upward of $500 million to purchase a National Basketball Association team. The investors also hope to attract a National Hockey League franchise…

…Kennesaw State University recently installed multiple state-of-the-art LED displays to the KSU Convocation Center. Located in Kennesaw, GA, the KSU Convocation Center is home to both the men’s and women’s basketball programs, as well as women’s volleyball. Daktronics installed a wall-mounted video display that measures approximately 16 feet tall by 30 feet wide incorporating full-color LED pixels on 10 millimeter line spacing. The video board can operate as an independent display showing single large images or be divided into multiple windows to show a wide variety of statistics, information, graphics, animations, and live and recorded video. The new video display is the largest indoor display at any school in the Atlantic Sun Conference and KSU is only the second school in the conference to feature an indoor LED video display…

…Some have argued the fences in new Marlin Park should be moved in because home runs are too difficult to hit, but team president David Samson says the ballpark plays the way it was designed. The outfield is substantially bigger than at the Marlins’ former home, with power alleys of 386 feet in left-center field and 392 in right-center. In the first 15 games at the ballpark, more than a dozen flyballs were caught on the warning track.

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