Bruce Springsteen is coming

August 15th, 2012 at 8:40 pm by under News, Personalities, Sports, Uncategorized

Bruce Springsteen started his latest concert tour tonight with a show in Boston, and is coming to Virginia on Tuesday October 23rd.

Unfortunately, when “The Boss” visits the Commonwealth he will stop in Charlottesville and not Hampton Roads. Granted, C’ville is a great college town, even though its population is only 196,000. Hampton Roads on the other hand is home to more than 1.5 million people.

So why pass on a market with so many more music, sports and circus fans? Charlottesville has something we don’t have. An indoor arena that seats more than 14,600 people.

Gabby Douglas and her USA teammates start their American tour next month with 40 stops including Des Moines Iowa, where Gabby has lived the past two years. Not on the list?

You guessed it, Hampton Roads.

The Wells Fargo Center in Des Moines doesn’t have an NBA team or an NHL team, or even an AHL team, but it does have over 16,000 seats and is connected to their convention center by a shared parking lot? Sounds a little like Virginia Beach if you ask me. Enough seats to welcome Gabby back to her second home.

By the way, the population of greater Des Moines is just under 600,000.

The Sprint Center in Kansas City doesn’t have an NBA or NHL team as a tenant, but is also hosting Gabby and her teammates, as well as an NBA game with Lebron James and the Miami Heat taking on the Washington Wizards, Joel Osteen, the NY Rangers against the Colorado Avalanche, Bruce Springsteen and did I mention, Justin Bieber. All over the next couple of months.

By the way the population of the Kansas City metropolitan area is a little over 2-million people.

Who says you need an NBA or NHL team to make it worth your while to build an arena?

NCAA officials have told me Hampton Roads would almost certainly get a first round basketball tournament weekend, if the area had a new arena. ACC folks have said many times, putting their famous basketball tournament in a neutral market like Hampton Roads with plenty of empty hotel rooms, would make fans from non-Carolina schools happy, and would be a nice midway point for the conference schools located from Syracuse to Miami. Tickets would sell like hot cakes; the host city would make a mint in taxes, not to mention hotel rooms, restaurants and stores. But don’t even start talking until a new arena is built.

Is Hampton Roads ready for an Arena, and are there city leaders out there with the guts to make it happen?

What do you think? Comments are welcome.

By the way, this is a blog. Not a television story, not a newspaper column it is a Web site that contains an online personal journal with reflections and comments. Don’t shoot the messenger, read it for what it is. Get involved in the discussion or don’t.

4 Responses to “Bruce Springsteen is coming”

  1. Barbara says:

    Springsteen actually resumed his U.S. leg last night in Boston, coming home from Europe- tonight is Boston night #2.
    You make good points about the lack of an arena here and its affect on the cultural and sports life generally in Hampton Roads. Springsteen did play Hampton in the mid-80s, a long time ago…. I go to Greensboro NC’s indoor arena to see him on many of his tours, also am heading to DC for the Sept. 14th outdoor show, since he’s obviously not coming closer to HR than C’ville.

    So…. what’s the process for making some noise about the positive effects on the local economy for a big arena– not waiting for city leaders to take the first step but starting it grass roots? I’d imagine, though, this already been tried? What is the history here?

  2. Steven says:

    The population of Charlottesville is 45,000 not 196,000.

  3. Adam says:

    I’m new to Hampton Roads, having moved from KC. I can tell you that the Sprint Center in KC is not “worthwhile” and is considered by most residents as a colossal failure. It was supposed to lure an “anchor tenant,” i.e. an NBA or NHL team. Until then, it’s nine figures of public money largely wasted in a city with a failing school system and infrastructure problems.

    The highly touted “economic benefits” to local restaurants and hotels is largely bunk — all it’s done is cannibalize other restaurants elsewhere in town.

    I’d hate to see this kind of waste come to my new home town.

  4. Arthur A Lovisi says:

    Need 40000 seat domed facility designed for football with 12 foot walls from which additional seats to perm concourse could extend for basketball & other shows. Arena/stadium would become new home for ODU & NSU football. & one or two major ODU BB games per year perhaps DH for maquee games with NSU or Women. There’s your anchor. Lure Meac & Conf USA tournaments & Acc and NcAA mens sub regional.

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