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TJ O'Pootertoot

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Given how long it takes to design and build stadiums it's probably more accurate to say the shift happened while the dome was being developed; not after.

Before Camden Yards, Populous (then HOK) built the Blue Jays "other home stadium," Sahlen Field (then Pilot Field) in Buffalo, almost like a test for a retro design. It has some post-modern elements and is more concrete than brick but it's what got the ball rolling and what got them hired in Baltimore. They broke ground in July 1986, three months ahead of SkyDome.

Hindsight is 20/20 and there's no point faulting the dome, which was consciously designed as an all-purpose stadium and which is now "regressing" into a baseball (at least, non-football) stadium. Baseball has been rolling with variations on the retro thing for a long time and while it could swing the other way, I doubt they'll come back to something modernist, like we have. In the USA, of course, you have massive football and baseball stadiums sitting right next to each other, sometimes amid massive fields of parking. We're not going to do that here.

So, just like any fashion or design element, architecture goes through phases. There are ways to improve the dome without compromising its inherent character and without dressing it up as something that it isn't.

(Just adding this great quote from the Vancouver Sun, in 1989, direct from Wikpedia. It shows that even at the time, people saw the "mistake" Toronto had made...[again, subject to what I said earlier about the very concious decision not to build a baseball-only stadium, like Buffalo's):

I have seen the future of baseball and it looks a lot like the past. The best new ballpark in North America looks like the best old ballpark in North America. Forget SkyDome. Pilot Field, home to the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons baseball club, makes Toronto's newest toy look like a crass gimmick. It dares to offer the revolutionary concept of playing baseball on grass, open to the elements. And it does it in the prettiest playground in the game. Built last year for $42 million, (compared to SkyDome's half-billion), Pilot Field resembles a turn-of-the-century ballpark complete with soaring archways, exposed girders, palladian windows, and a copper-green metal roof above the stands topped with two cupolas. Its concrete facade has been "rusticated" to resemble the limestone walls of the heritage buildings in the downtown neighborhood that surround it. Pilot Field is so wildly popular with the citizens of Buffalo that it has helped rejuvenate Buffalo's once-decaying downtown. It was a matter of philosophy. Toronto built an edifice: Buffalo embraced an idea. Toronto elevated technology over the game: Buffalo honored the past. Buffalo ended up with the better ballpark. It may be the best ballpark built since the construction of the game's holy triumvirate - Wrigley, Fenway and Briggs.[

p.s. Just came across this article which seems relevant:
 
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Jayomatic

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Whenever we do end up building a stadium, I'd personally love if they went with either of these directions;
  • More traditional but with a Canadian twist. Take some inspiration from prominent Canadian architecture like the chateau style CP hotels
royalyork30.jpg

  • Something of a mix of traditional structure but built with sustainable materials and heavy uses of timber.

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    8560e7f033907087a8c8a19fcd059cd1.png
 

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Richard White

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Whenever we do end up building a stadium, I'd personally love if they went with either of these directions;
  • More traditional but with a Canadian twist. Take some inspiration from prominent Canadian architecture like the chateau style CP hotels
View attachment 373456
  • Something of a mix of traditional structure but built with sustainable materials and heavy uses of timber.

  1. View attachment 373450View attachment 373451

Both not practical unfortunately. They would look good but that is about it.


Timber stadiums likely would not meet fire code while giving stadiums a Canadian twist is expensive from a design and build perspective. Stone carving is not cheap.
 

CityRider

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I believe the translucent roof panel problem was already talked about much earlier in this discussion, but for reference, here's some info on why they don't use them: https://groovyhistory.com/houston-astrodome
"At first the team played on grass, utilizing the translucent panels to keep the field green. Unfortunately, the engineers involved failed to take into account the vision of outfielders. During afternoon games the translucent panels would blind players, adding more than a degree of difficulty in catching fly balls."

The roof doesn't particularly affect functionality/gameplay the way, say, new seating does. In theory, if you can put in new panels (Translucent, clear, whatever), no reason it can be done bit by bit through the season or over a couple of off-seasons. They also don't have to do all 4 panels; even just 2 and 3 would make a big difference.

And I think you're right about the issues letting in light from the north... I'd still like to see options. Could be too much to hope for.

And I also agree about the cladding - I just think it should be something complementary, not slapping brick up to make some lame, faux-retro facade that doesn't work otherwise.
 

TOareaFan

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Interested in seeing how the new scoreboard reno turns out. Looks like the new screen will be larger and some of the LED screens will be replaced. Perhaps a new fan area will be constructed in that space as well.

In terms of the $250MM reno plans, I'd say this pic is indicative that substantial components of the facility can be gutted and rebuilt, especially the outfield and hotel areas. As others have pointed out, the 100 level seating bowl will likely be the focus of the renovations with a new orientation, seating replacements (cupholders, please!), premium seating and areas underneath the bowl a la Scotiabank.

An Athletic article a few years back mentioned the possibility of reorienting the field to face NE towards the CN Tower which would allow for a new outfield plaza/entrance on the NE side of the stadium. Doing so would require reorienting the roof as well which was apparently investigated. That would likely be cost prohibitive IMO. New 100 level seating and fan spaces is still a major plus as both are long overdue. Our lower bowl seating is some of the worst in the Majors.
if they are going to renovate the hotel area they are gonna spend a decent chunk of the $250MM budget just buying the hotel from its owners.
 

daptive

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I believe the translucent roof panel problem was already talked about much earlier in this discussion, but for reference, here's some info on why they don't use them: https://groovyhistory.com/houston-astrodome
"At first the team played on grass, utilizing the translucent panels to keep the field green. Unfortunately, the engineers involved failed to take into account the vision of outfielders. During afternoon games the translucent panels would blind players, adding more than a degree of difficulty in catching fly balls."

I wonder how feasible is it to stretch a thin white fabric across the interior steel supports to make the interior more friendly less industrial. Projections and lights onto the ceiling would also pop a lot more across a smooth white surface.

Perhaps not as show-stopping as a transparent roof but with the budget laid out, probably more attainable
 

Darwinkgo

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if they are going to renovate the hotel area they are gonna spend a decent chunk of the $250MM budget just buying the hotel from its owners.
It depends. Own can be quite colloquial. Likely somewhere in the 50-99 year lease range.

There is a reason the stadium itself sold for so little, there are so many legal encumbrances (long term deals at low to no revenue) stretching back all the way to the initial financing. Given the long term nature of those deals, I have to wonder if replacing the stadium on the same site was ever really an option.
 

TJ O'Pootertoot

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I believe the translucent roof panel problem was already talked about much earlier in this discussion, but for reference, here's some info on why they don't use them: https://groovyhistory.com/houston-astrodome
"At first the team played on grass, utilizing the translucent panels to keep the field green. Unfortunately, the engineers involved failed to take into account the vision of outfielders. During afternoon games the translucent panels would blind players, adding more than a degree of difficulty in catching fly balls."

Fair point. My only caveat would be that the Astrodome was built in the mid-60s and glass technology might now allow for something that mitigates this issue. But everyone knows that the roof in Tampa Bay has this problem and clearly we don't want to replicate that. I just can't help but feel there is something cosmetic they can do with the roof that will make it look nicer, when closed. Jeeze, spray paint a sky mural on the inside!
:)
 

TOareaFan

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It depends. Own can be quite colloquial. Likely somewhere in the 50-99 year lease range.

There is a reason the stadium itself sold for so little, there are so many legal encumbrances (long term deals at low to no revenue) stretching back all the way to the initial financing. Given the long term nature of those deals, I have to wonder if replacing the stadium on the same site was ever really an option.
Rogers owns the leasehold interest in the stadium...another company owns the leasehold interest in the hotel....so Rogers can't just arbitrarily renovate the hotel part.
 

officedweller

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I wonder how feasible is it to stretch a thin white fabric across the interior steel supports to make the interior more friendly less industrial.

BC Place has fabric to block off the upper level during Whitecaps games to make it more intimate.

BC-Place-Vancouver-Whitecaps-FC.jpg

 

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