Go Green by Saving Green

Resident arena apologist Dan Rodricks couldn’t go three days without talking about the new arena, with yesterdays column adding new levels to his preposterous stance on the matter:

Here’s how Baltimore gets the world’s attention, attracts an NBA or NHL franchise, pulls in a major corporate sponsor, establishes another tourist destination a couple of blocks from Camden Yards, helps foster a new sector of jobs in Maryland and reduces long-term operating costs of its new downtown arena: with pizza made from tomatoes grown on the premises.

It is absolutely essential that the city recruit a visionary architect to design the new arena, and this design must be green from the ground up – even below ground – and I’m not kidding about including a terrace or hothouse for a tomato garden.

When I say “green,” I don’t mean 20 percent green. I mean green beyond green – far beyond what has been achieved in public and private spaces so far. Baltimore’s new arena should meet or surpass goals of the U.S. Green Building Council. It should have a major wow factor architecturally but also set an example of sustainability for the nation and the world.

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So to recap, Dan Rodricks, who already thinks that spending millions to build a new arena is more important than fixing schools and eradicating violent crime, now wants to double the cost of the arena, while increasing the price of tickets and concession on the middle and working class families of the area, just to make his bleeding heart feel better.

That’s not to say that some of his ideas aren’t good. I have no problem with the use of solar panels, particularly in light of the more effective and cheaper solar technologies that are out there these days.

But when you consider that fact that this new arena will be used more than the current arena, and the fact that the probably location of this arena is going to create traffic congestion worse than what we current see for the facility, wouldn’t the most environmentally friendly suggestion regarding the new arena, if Rodricks were really serious about putting the environmental issue first, would be to not build it in the first place?

Rodricks support for the arena is somewhat inconvenient given his wacko environmental stances over the years. The easiest way to reconcile this is to save Baltimore taxpayers some green of their own, in the manner of the money that can be saved by not building this silly project.


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