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The one and only thing that peeves me (though Paul Allen's actions over the years have annoyed me quite a bit), is that Canzano opened his big trap.

Douglas K.

I'm in favor of fewer seats in the MC simply because fewer seats=wider seats. The average American backside circa 1960 was somewhat smaller than today. I think 12,000 to 7,000 is a preposterous reduction, though. The venue should be able to seat between 8,000 and 9,000 for hockey and basketball, accommodating a reasonably large Winter Hawks crowd (or, someday, a WNBA team).


Thanks for the great explanation for the whole mess. I am more informed but only slightly less confused. My head hurts now.
The politics and waste of this whole deal are mind blowing.
The city and the Blazers need to stop screwing around.
Here is what they should do:

Keep the Arena, renovate the building as it is with better seating and creative options for small venues. Make it a place for more upscale acts and things. Let the Rose Garden be for the Blazers and Monster Truck events. No competition there, just Ying and Yang compliments.
Get mixed use development in the area with an emphasis on entertainment. Get that dead spot on the river greened up and connected to the rest of the waterfront.
People need to be living and working in the area with supporting services as well.
Make the existing parking structures multi-use and add more as required.
Is it really so freaking hard?

Matt J

Thank you for this post. We all know that it all comes down to $. This is the first time I have seen it spelled out so clearly. At some point I would hope the city hires, or we elect, someone that can compete with these kinds of larger entities that clearly know how to outswing, outwit, and outmaneouver in the boardroom.


Yes, the powerful business interests are far
more sophisticated and motivated than most of our politicians, and top management at the city, PDC, etc. I have seen it first hand. And Dr. Macht's assessment concludes the same in a respectful manner.

The folks at PDC for example which is run by an engineer from ODOT, spend much of their time posturing for public perception. They spend the balance watching the performance of their double ended city and state contributions of their million dollar PERS balances.

Don't believe me? What have they been doing with the $200 million a year they spend? Too much of it gets wasted. It's shameful.

Amy Rose

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Look, if you have a 1968 VW Bug and a 2010 VW Bug, the newer one will naturally attract more use because it's better looking, has more room, has more power, etc. Certainly, if there was no 2010 VW Bug, the 1968 version would attract more use - but it would never be a 2010 Bug.

With respect to the Colliseum and Rose Garden, the analogy holds. More events would be attracted to the Rose Garden because it's a larger facility with more features, etc. Were the Rose Garden never built, the Colliseum would undoubtedly get more use - but that wouldn't make the Colliseum the Rose Garden (or economically self sufficient).

Money is certainly the issue. However, the Colliseum was built in the 1950s and can only be "upgraded" just so much. The Colliseum will never be a serious competitor to the Rose Garden for first class events.

Just because the architects think it's something special doesn't mean the Colliseum has not outlived its usefulness.

Brian Libby


Your analogy is off.

We don't have a 2010 bug and a 1968 bug in the Rose Quarter and Coliseum. We have a two-car garage with a 1960 Corvette and a 1992 Buick. And now people have tried to replace the 1960 Corvette with a 2010 Kia.

Memorial Coliseum has not outlived its usefulness. There is an economic justification for having two differently sized arenas next door to each other.

What's more, you can't simply belittle or marginalize the people two whom the Coliseum's architecture is important. It's not just architects nor a small band of people. It's the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the very national organization tasked with protecting landmark buildings. It's the US Green Building Council, the national organization overseeing sustainable design and construction. These organizations and the American Institute of Architects have all called for the MC's preservation.

You're right that money is a big part of the issue. But buildings and facilities are not always interchangeable. It's not just about upgrading the Coliseum. It's about preserving the only arena in the world with a 360-degree glass view. Having one-of-a-kind designs and protecting them isn't naive or economically unsound. Irreplaceable places have broad economic value to the community.

Again, you have to look at your original analogy here. These arenas are not all the same. Building designs matter. Memorial Coliseum was built as a utilitarian multipurpose arena originally, but now it has that and greater value as the epitome of great midcentury modern architecture. It's four city blocks resting on four columns - a masterful work of engineering. It's a glass box wherein the bounty of natural light symbolizes the way our World War II and Korean War veterans overcame dark forces. The whole building is a veterans' memorial.

You don't just demolish places like this solely out of metrics of usefulness and economics. If the MC didn't have this economic value as an ongoing arena, then maybe the architecture alone wouldn't be reason enough to save it. But the Coliseum DOES have a viable purpose, so coupling that with the irreplaceable architecture makes a very compelling case for its preservation.

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