Ark

Best and worst stadiums (aesthetically)

Recommended Posts

Home bias aside, Air Canada Centre has since day zero felt like both the biggest small pro arena & the smallest big pro arena at once.  Inside feels both intimate & yet never too much.  I really don't think a giant Bell Centre building would work well for Toronto... we can get loud, just not 41 games worth.

 

Spoiler


air_canada_centre.jpg

 

(2013 photo)

 

re. Tropicana, I'll always remember when they debuted, the Jays broadcasters would say it's a great little park if you just keep your eyes trained from the outfield scoreboard/lights & down.  By far the ugliest roof ever, like it could be a giant Costco warehouse.  SkyDome's roof isn't much nicer, though it is out of eye sight if you don't crane up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The post-renovation Maracana is a thing of simple beauty, with a gigantic mass of fans in a single tier under that gigantic roof, especially with the mountains of Rio poking over the roof in the background:

 

Stadion_Rio_de_Janeiro_Finale_WM_2014_(2

 

Camden Yards might be the best setting in all of baseball (right up there with PNC and AT&T). The Warehouse never looks better than when the sun hits it at sunset:

img_7688.jpg

 

Speaking of best settings in baseball, Coors Field is both aesthetically pleasing itself, and has a gorgeous mountain backdrop befitting its team's name. I love the 'Rockpile' in center, along with the clean, crisp lines throughout the entire park - there is nothing contrived here:

 

148_1804-RAW-coors-field-sunset-rockies-

 

I find Busch Stadium rather aesthetically pleasing, especially now with the ballpark village in LF complete:

 

busch_topv6.jpg

 

And the best retractable roof in all of sports, Safeco Field. The roof actually adds to the beauty of the stadium (when open). And the placement and size of that scoreboard is nothing short of perfect. Much like Coors, clean, crisp lines, and nothing contrived:

 

053014_180-bvh.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Would it be a good idea for the Rays to paint the walls sky blue, since it's a team color and all. or would it just be a chintzy attempt at approximating a blue sky?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I may be a homer:

 

ATT_Sunset_Panorama.jpg

AT&T Park has beautiful architecture (well-placed scoreboards, modernized approximations of vintage ballpark quirks, and good interplay between the dark green/brick colors) and gorgeous views from nearly all vantage points. Heck, even the coke slide and glove are nice features (don't detract from the aesthetics of the park).

 

 

As for stadiums around the world, I have a few favorites:

 

Henningsv%C3%A6r-Stadion-arial.jpg

Henningsvær Stadion - Lofoten Islands, Norway

 

Ottmar-Hitzfeld-backdrop.jpg

Ottmar Hitzfeld stadium - FC Gspon's stadium - Gspon, Switzerland

 

sydney-cricket-ground.jpg

Sydney Cricket Ground - Sydney, Australia

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why's the grass at Pac Bell park so short? It looks like the turf at the Trop.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
32 minutes ago, the admiral said:

Would it be a good idea for the Rays to paint the walls sky blue, since it's a team color and all. or would it just be a chintzy attempt at approximating a blue sky?

I think it'd wind up just looking chintzy, and would be an object of ridicule across the league for trying (and failing) to imitate an outdoor environment in what's ultimately a soulless dome.

 

Part of the problem with the Trop is that they're trying to fit a square peg into a round hole - a traditional baseball park into a warehouse-like dome. If they designed the dome 10 years later, they could've tried to conform it to a traditional baseball aesthetic. But the Trop is pre-Camden Yards (and didn't have a major league team overseeing its design, to boot), so no way that was ever happening. They basically designed it as the original New Comiskey with a warehouse roof overhead, and (like New Comiskey) are trying to spruce up the seating bowl and outfield into a "baseball-y" atmosphere. It just clashes with the hulking roof overhead, though.

 

Perhaps the only way to make the Trop look half decent (without a like-new renovation) would be to full 1960s Astrodome, and eschew any attempt to make it look like a traditional ballpark. Sure, it'd still be ugly, but at least it wouldn't be the discombobulated mess that the Trop is now:

 

astrodome2-1.jpg

 

Of course, given that the Trop is hideously ugly, has a fixed roof, and is located on the wrong side of the bay (in St. Pete rather than in the larger city of Tampa), they're much better off just tearing the whole thing down and rebuilding across the causeway. But obviously the price to buy out the lease with St. Pete is probably prohibitively expensive, or that would've been done by now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The above post hit everything on the head except regressing to the astrodome part. In the last few years they've made the closed off restaurant in center a batters eye bar with a walkway going 360° around the stadium. I heard someone the other week saying they're thinking of taking out some small areas in LF to have a chainlink fense for fans to come look at field level. They for sure want to get out of the building, but doing what they can to improve. I don't think it's the stadium as much as it's the location.

 

@the admiral post failed downtown sail stadium they came out with plans to make it a retractable roof. From home plate, center field is downtown st Pete and would have a good view, but roof be damned.

http://www.stadiumpage.com/concepts/Trop09_R.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, raysox said:

The above post hit everything on the head except regressing to the astrodome part. In the last few years they've made the closed off restaurant in center a batters eye bar with a walkway going 360° around the stadium. I heard someone the other week saying they're thinking of taking out some small areas in LF to have a chainlink fense for fans to come look at field level. They for sure want to get out of the building, but doing what they can to improve. I don't think it's the stadium as much as it's the location.

 

I'd mostly agree here. If you put the Trop in downtown Tampa, I think the Rays would have decent attendance. Granted, probably still not as much as they'd have with a pleasing newer ballpark, but probably high enough to ward off any relocation talk.

 

The Rays actually have a pretty good TV audience locally (https://www.forbes.com/sites/maurybrown/2014/08/05/mlb-telecasts-on-regional-sports-networks-dominate-prime-time-television/#568f51af5899), though TV ratings apparently plummeted 28% in 2016 (probably thanks to how terrible the Rays were this year). There's clearly interest in the Rays in the Tampa Bay market, but they just can't get fans to cross the bay to go sit in a mausoleum for 3 hours.

 

That said, I still think the Trop would look better if they stripped away any attempts at creating a "retro" feel in the ballpark. The scoreboard is the most prominent example of this. The fake flags and picket fence aren't fooling anyone, and just look jarring against a stark concrete backdrop:

 

26650077752_2e0cac6cc5_b.jpg

 

They should just embrace the utilitarianism of their venue - it wouldn't be pretty, and at worst it'd be outright brutalist (which is an architectural style I despise wholeheartedly), but I honestly think this pig would look better without any lipstick on it. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, raysox said:

 

I think aesthetically, the Trop has gotten a lot better. This pic is from 2007ish, and they installed new turf this year, and it's looking a lot better. The Rays got their own contract with the turf company, rather than going through the MLB. Working here has made me appreciate the building a lot more because it looks really playable, in comparison to the way it used to be. Definitely not the best, but I don't think it is as bad as people say, complete bias.

 

 

 

 

I give the Rays a lot of credit for doing what they can within the constraints of the stadium.  i couldn't find any pictures after a short search, but I remember the outfield walls beyond the seats being mostly blank concrete when Tropicana Field opened.  The scoreboard, video boards and ads do a pretty good job of covering up most of the concrete, but don't cover everything.

 

Ironically, part of what created that expanse of blank concrete is that Tropicana Field is designed to be a baseball stadium with a roof instead of multi-purpose donut (i.e., the stands are much higher behind home plate and down the baseline, with lower sections of the seats in the outfield).  If it was designed like most of the other original domes, there probably would have been upper deck seats all the way around the outfield.

 

9 hours ago, the admiral said:

Would it be a good idea for the Rays to paint the walls sky blue, since it's a team color and all. or would it just be a chintzy attempt at approximating a blue sky?

 

Probably chintzy, but I'd be curious to see a mockup of it.  To work, it would have to be a pretty muted blue that doesn't scream for attention . . . which rules out the actual team color.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, the admiral said:

Would it be a good idea for the Rays to paint the walls sky blue, since it's a team color and all. or would it just be a chintzy attempt at approximating a blue sky?

 

The Rays should paint the outside walls of the Trop sky blue too:

gan6M.jpg

 

Then they'll finally get that new park that they want.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Couldn't the Rays just paint/hang murals or something, like the Twins did for the RF upper deck yes?  

It's empty space & as others have mentioned, they're just filling it with ticky tacks... like one of those homes in the neighbourhood most of us know without a garden but 12000 planted pots & figurines making it look trailer park.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, raysox said:

 

@the admiral post failed downtown sail stadium they came out with plans to make it a retractable roof. From home plate, center field is downtown st Pete and would have a good view, but roof be damned.

http://www.stadiumpage.com/concepts/Trop09_R.html

I always wondered if the Rays were to have done this where they would've played for a year or two?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This may be a silly thought but why couldn't they paint the inside of the Trop like the ceiling of the Paris casino in Vegas? It wouldn't fool anyone but it'd at least give some sort of an illusion of being outdoors.

 

 

IMG_2074.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, AstroBull21 said:

I always wondered if the Rays were to have done this where they would've played for a year or two?

I always assumed either Jacksonville (Suns/Jumbo Shrimp stadium) or Orlando (WWOS or temporary seating added to Tinker Field). Huh. Guess it's a good thing it never happened. Now that I think of it, an expansion to the Tampa Yankees' stadium would have probably worked out (it could probably still work if they desperately need a stadium [ex: Trop roof collapses similar to the Metrodome's]), and it wouldn't be a bad choice for a new stadium in the future.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Magic Dynasty said:

I always assumed either Jacksonville (Suns/Jumbo Shrimp stadium) or Orlando (WWOS or temporary seating added to Tinker Field). Huh. Guess it's a good thing it never happened. Now that I think of it, an expansion to the Tampa Yankees' stadium would have probably worked out (it could probably still work if they desperately need a stadium [ex: Trop roof collapses similar to the Metrodome's]), and it wouldn't be a bad choice for a new stadium in the future.

Yeah, ESPN complex at Disney would've likely been the temporary option.  Tinker Field would've required too much infrastructure.

 

On an emergency basis, I would assume the home games would relocate to the opposing city much like when Baltimore played as the home team in the Trop during the riots a few years ago.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Frank Clair Stadium, Well now it is TD place it will always be Frank Clair to me but For the most part it kinda gave me a head ache, 
2010-11-24-09-57-55-2010-02-22-02-36-42-


Then It was given new life! 

MP_REDBLACKS_9-1-e1466537111974.jpg

I must say it is unreal the way the stadium is today and the whole face lift Lansdowne Park got. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rays could make left field like Candlestick 

 

 

Home runs to left field in Candlestick during that era are the best. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tropicana Field is the absolute worst. It's ugly inside, it's ugly outside, and there's nothing (well, was nothing circa 2002) near the stadium, plus it -- like everything else in the Tampa/St. Pete area -- is 45 minutes away from everything else. Tear it down, move the team, and start somewhere better.

 

I was just in LA and saw Dodger Stadium from the plane. Bummer that I couldn't see it in person; maybe next trip.

 

I did go to Staples Center. My seats were awesome (110, row A), so my experience was likely atypical, but for a building that looks so intimidating on TV, it's actually pretty well appointed in person. Plus that they make the area unique for each tenant (Kings, Lakers, Clippers) is pretty impressive.

 

And until I go someplace better, this remains my favorite place to have watched a game, and that's across all sports:

cincinnati-reds-tickets-great-american-b

 

Big league stadium, small league prices, and a focus on baseball that even made me -- a longtime lapsed baseball fan -- care about Reds history.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, DG_Now said:

Tropicana Field is the absolute worst. It's ugly inside, it's ugly outside, and there's nothing (well, was nothing circa 2002) near the stadium, plus it -- like everything else in the Tampa/St. Pete area -- is 45 minutes away from everything else. Tear it down, move the team, and start somewhere better.

 

I was just in LA and saw Dodger Stadium from the plane. Bummer that I couldn't see it in person; maybe next trip.

 

I did go to Staples Center. My seats were awesome (110, row A), so my experience was likely atypical, but for a building that looks so intimidating on TV, it's actually pretty well appointed in person. Plus that they make the area unique for each tenant (Kings, Lakers, Clippers) is pretty impressive.

 

And until I go someplace better, this remains my favorite place to have watched a game, and that's across all sports:

 

 

Big league stadium, small league prices, and a focus on baseball that even made me -- a longtime lapsed baseball fan -- care about Reds history.

I am curious about this.  I have not been to that ballpark.  Is the "focus" a lack of sideshow crap?  (that would be great).  Historic facts/artifacts placed throughout the ballpark (also great)?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's been a while, but I remember a bunch of banners with Reds history as you enter the stadium area, and a Reds museum near the main entrance. Those and the usual plaques with Reds info.  I also recall a base path out front, which (according to Wikipedia) represents the old Crosley Field.

 

It's a cool place, and had a different vibe than other MLB parks I've been to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now