Monday, October 01, 2007

Wizards Stadium a Racial Issue

You might think that the TIF issue coming up later this month has nothing to do with race. That is, unless you think like Woody Woodruff, whose editorial reply was posted today by KMBC. From Woodruff's reply, he looks to be making this a race issue, where if you're for the stadium you are racist, because Bannister Mall reopening would be the best thing for the "black community." I'm gonna go through Woodruff's reply tonight with a rebuttal.

A better approach would be to better manage the 40 existing good buildings, simply cut the grass, and add to what is already there.
Would this really help the area? Most of the 40 buildings in the area of the proposed redevelopment are too big for most local businesses that would use that area now. And many larger, national chains have already moved in and later left that area. I mean what company would move into the former Montgomery Ward building that hasn't already at one time been located out at the Bannister Mall area? Would those businesses really be interested in returning to that area without MAJOR redevelopment done? I doubt it.
The interests of the black community and Kansas City, for good jobs, tax revenues, and economic development would be better served by reopening the mall now.
This is where Woodruff plays the race card. He makes it seem that if you're for this development, then you're against the betterment of the black community. It seems like he's trying to make this issue into an argument between the local black community around the mall, and the white soccer moms who would come to the stadium.

Good jobs? Wouldn't the black community be better served by having some new development in the area? Bringing in some new business and some old businesses that moved out of the mall area in the past? Maybe it's me, but I would think the redevelopment of the area would stand a better chance of bringing in new jobs then to just reopen the mall.

Economic development? As with the jobs, wouldn't more economic development come if there was some major redevelopment to spur on that economic development? I wouldn't think that the current standing of the area would allow for that much economic development in the area.

...and by investing time in getting the state permission to build a casino in the future.
Unless Mr. Woodruff has a grand plan to move the Missouri or Mississippi, he's gonna have a rough time getting the city and state to work on getting this done. That's because for this to even be possible, the state would have to amend the state constitution, because right now, the state only allows gambling within 1000 feet of either the MO or MS River. Trying to get the amendment changed has been tried once before, when there was an attempt to make riverboat gambling possible on the Lake of the Ozarks. That plan failed miserably if I remember correctly. Would things be much different this time? I doubt it.

The mall has only been closed for four months. Kansas City should allow more time for other ideas and proposals to emerge.
Yes, the malls only been closed for 4 months, but the mall and the surrounding area has been basically deserted for years now. The area has seen store after store leave the Bannister area. Would these same stores come back to the area? I doubt it

Yes, I have a bias view on the topic, I'm a fan of the Kansas City Wizards and would very much love to have the stadium in a central location like Bannister. Mr. Woodruff, though, is just as bias in the other direction. He's a Bannister businessman, he'd stand to benefit from the area remaining the way it is. The benefits he suggests would happen by the area just being cleaned up seem far fetched and dream like.


szazzy said...

Great rebuttal.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, put a casino there...LOL

Nice job Mike.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, but you posted the rebuttal in a wrong place. This needs to be mailed as a letter to the original newspaper in which the other guy's opinion appeared. Nobody other than few geeks on a soccer message board is going to read your blog. Certainly not that businessman, and definitely not other readers of the newspaper.

Anonymous said...

I found this rebuttal from this site:

He's definitely not a soccer fan.