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"Hey Burlington! FU!"---South Burlington

Anybody else think this is more of an attempt to pressure others into backing the on campus plan? Vermont had seemed very much uninterested in anything off campus. It would be great for South Burlington, ok for UVM and suck for Burlington unless your concerns are traffic and parking and anything cool. No offense to those fixated on traffic and parking.
I thought that same thing (FU Burlington) when I saw that Burlington was also working on a plan for Memorial Auditorium. I don't know that this really changes anything for an onsite location, since the fundraising was not far along. It seems to me that the University is realizing and accepting the difficulty of raising the money to fund that sort of project and is considering other ways to get something done. As was previously mentioned, the potential Burlington and South Burlington locations are about a mile from campus. To me, that's pretty much an onsite location. I'm sure if we look farther back in this thread, there's been plenty of discussion about partnering with the state or city to help with the funding. Whatever the motives are for this happening now, I think it's pretty exciting. The creation of a city center in South Burlington has been on the drawing board for at least a couple of years that I know of. Since tax increment financing can be used and bonded, if South Burlington can get the voters to approve the bond, raising the money should be easier and quicker than fundraising $50-$85 million dollars.

As far as my preference of locations, from what I've seen of the project, I'd prefer the SB location. As was previously mentioned, getting in and out of Burlington is not quick and easy (and I'm not that old). Since SB has more space available, parking and egress should be much smoother. If all the housing would be going in as well, there will certainly be additional restaurants and bars going in as well. Anything that could get done in Burlington would be cramped and likely require offsite parking. To me, that's too much of a trade off for the proximity to Church Street and it's amenities.
 

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More coverage: http://www.sevendaysvt.com/OffMessage/archives/2016/02/23/uvm-south-burlington-consider-60-million-arena

This article states that the City of South Burlington would own the facility, but seek financial assistance from UVM "and it's donor base." Basically, a lease agreement. Standard.

If I were the city officials, I'd ease up on the "it will be an economic boom for restaurants et al" - that is usually never true, and that's been proven with arenas and stadiums across America. Sure, UVM/South Burlington is on a much smaller scale, but at a smaller scale, there's greater risk, arguably, too. This, and it would put an entirely new element of pressure on the university to have superior athletic products, and less patience for "down years" - because now they've got to answer to a city that is expecting their on-court product to bring in attendance numbers, to spur on area businesses in the city center. I'd be fine with that added pressure, and it would have come wherever the arena is built. On-campus though, there's definitely more of an element of control, however.

I'm sure they're aware, but it's interesting the shift, and the other factors that are going to be at play.

In the meantime, give me some new, comfortable bleachers in Patrick, please.
 

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If I were the city officials, I'd ease up on the "it will be an economic boom for restaurants et al" - that is usually never true, and that's been proven with arenas and stadiums across America. Sure, UVM/South Burlington is on a much smaller scale, but at a smaller scale, there's greater risk, arguably, too. This, and it would put an entirely new element of pressure on the university to have superior athletic products, and less patience for "down years" - because now they've got to answer to a city that is expecting their on-court product to bring in attendance numbers, to spur on area businesses in the city center. I'd be fine with that added pressure, and it would have come wherever the arena is built. On-campus though, there's definitely more of an element of control, however.
The other way of looking at this is that, while UVM Hockey/Basketball would be the primary tenant, there would be more opportunities for other revenue streams that have nothing to do with sports (there has to be, in order to make a project like this feasible). Higher Ground is right across the street...I guarantee you they are soiling themselves at the thought of promoting concerts there that have probably turned them down at the sight Memorial Auditorium. That would certainly take some of the pressure (financial and otherwise) off of UVM athletics.

That's been the thing from the get-go, this is a building for sports...but it *needs* to be about more than sports.
 

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In case anyone wants to see what the rest of the internet commentariate think:

https://www.facebook.com/sevendaysvt/posts/10153901873306763

https://www.facebook.com/bfpnews/posts/10153560263123871

It has, and always will be, an uphill battle in the eyes of the public in this state. You have to wonder from a PR prospective how will the city and UVM jointly make a campaign that tries to sway people in SB into buying in. They've got to go beyond the whole "the area needs it" idea - because a lot of people don't think they do. My suspicion is there are going to be a lot of public forums, and meetings...and some might have a VT Gas pipeline vibe to them in terms of people who will get religiously behind opposing something.
 

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The other way of looking at this is that, while UVM Hockey/Basketball would be the primary tenant, there would be more opportunities for other revenue streams that have nothing to do with sports (there has to be, in order to make a project like this feasible). Higher Ground is right across the street...I guarantee you they are soiling themselves at the thought of promoting concerts there that have probably turned them down at the sight Memorial Auditorium. That would certainly take some of the pressure (financial and otherwise) off of UVM athletics.

That's been the thing from the get-go, this is a building for sports...but it *needs* to be about more than sports.
Yes, all true. But, you could take what I said about the sports teams and substitute quality of concert/other performances in for it as well. A venue like this doesn't generally equal a rising tide/boon for surrounding businesses. It's going to be about quality of product, too. Are you getting Kendrick Lamar, or are you getting Toto on their 47th "Reunion Tour" and how ticket sales are going to be a reflection of the quality of how something is booked.

As I said in the post about the FB comments from others. They're going to have to be a lot of proving by the city and SB. People now know that an arena = boom is a fallacy. Add in the stubborn nature of Vermonters, and people in South Burlington, that now this issue, confined as a UVM campus issue, is being put in their backyard.

I'd like it all to happen as much as the next person here. But, jumping from campus to off-campus opens up a whole new set of things UVM is going to have to answer to, and so will the city. And, given the fact that the current AD when he talks puts you to sleep, this all goes back to how the new AD is going to have to act as a big pitchman for the project, if it goes ahead after the study.
 

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Yes, all true. But, you could take what I said about the sports teams and substitute quality of concert/other performances in for it as well. A venue like this doesn't generally equal a rising tide/boon for surrounding businesses. It's going to be about quality of product, too. Are you getting Kendrick Lamar, or are you getting Toto on their 47th "Reunion Tour" and how ticket sales are going to be a reflection of the quality of how something is booked.
What's wrong with Toto?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=htgr3pvBr-I&feature=youtu.be

I'll put us down for 2 tickets, front-row center.
 

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In case anyone wants to see what the rest of the internet commentariate think:

https://www.facebook.com/sevendaysvt/posts/10153901873306763

https://www.facebook.com/bfpnews/posts/10153560263123871

It has, and always will be, an uphill battle in the eyes of the public in this state. You have to wonder from a PR prospective how will the city and UVM jointly make a campaign that tries to sway people in SB into buying in. They've got to go beyond the whole "the area needs it" idea - because a lot of people don't think they do. My suspicion is there are going to be a lot of public forums, and meetings...and some might have a VT Gas pipeline vibe to them in terms of people who will get religiously behind opposing something.
Don't need to read the comments, I grew up in VT and lived there for 24 years. I know what they have to say:

*Waste of money- need to build parking first.

*Money should go to XYZ conservation/environmental program

*More treatment centers!!!- because instead of giving people some place to go and something to do RE more entertainment options because not everyone can afford to ski/mountain bike/has a boat/or wants to hike, maybe Vermonters won't be so into drugs/alcohol(?)

*More expensive stuff public has to pay for we don't need


Close?
 

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They've got to go beyond the whole "the area needs it" idea - because a lot of people don't think they do. My suspicion is there are going to be a lot of public forums, and meetings...and some might have a VT Gas pipeline vibe to them in terms of people who will get religiously behind opposing something.

Yeah- If being honest if we're talking about a need vs a want, inherently UVM Athletics needs it (badly) and the actual "area" a lot less so.
 

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Was the Davis Center a need? That went up after I graduated, and I never once thought- "hey guys, we really need a student center on campus". Cook commons was fine.

Also, the Echo Center is really cool, nice, and in a spectacular space on the waterfront. I've taken my family a number of times and we always enjoy it...but it's a museum about..... Lake Champlain? Was that really needed- but people are always there and it's packed every time I've gone- it's lake fish, algae, and like frogs...ok. Can't tell me Chittenden County wouldn't frequent a shiny new arena for events.


It's just wild there's no arena...the people that were the driving forces behind those two projects- we need to find them and get them on board.
 

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Don't need to read the comments, I grew up in VT and lived there for 24 years. I know what they have to say:

*Waste of money- need to build parking first.

*Money should go to XYZ conservation/environmental program

*More treatment centers!!!- because instead of giving people some place to go and something to do RE more entertainment options because not everyone can afford to ski/mountain bike/has a boat/or wants to hike, maybe Vermonters won't be so into drugs/alcohol(?)

*More expensive stuff public has to pay for we don't need


Close?
Yeah, pretty much spot on. I read a page of so of the comments from each website. It seems that some of the people didn't even read the article. Many are talking about increasing the cost of tuition. That was not mentioned anywhere as a funding source for this project (UVM fundraising, TIC/bond). Some mention spending money on completely unrelated things...typical liberal agenda stuff...like its an either or scenario...TIC financing can only be used for infrastructure improvements.
 

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Yeah, pretty much spot on. I read a page of so of the comments from each website. It seems that some of the people didn't even read the article. Many are talking about increasing the cost of tuition. That was not mentioned anywhere as a funding source for this project (UVM fundraising, TIC/bond). Some mention spending money on completely unrelated things...typical liberal agenda stuff...like its an either or scenario...TIC financing can only be used for infrastructure improvements.
Don't forget the sleazy former nightclub owner who accused the city of bribes and racial profiling. He conveniently left out his clubs indiscretions, like serving underage people, overflowing occupancy, and a stabbing or two.
 

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Was the Davis Center a need? That went up after I graduated, and I never once thought- "hey guys, we really need a student center on campus". Cook commons was fine.

Also, the Echo Center is really cool, nice, and in a spectacular space on the waterfront. I've taken my family a number of times and we always enjoy it...but it's a museum about..... Lake Champlain? Was that really needed- but people are always there and it's packed every time I've gone- it's lake fish, algae, and like frogs...ok. Can't tell me Chittenden County wouldn't frequent a shiny new arena for events.


It's just wild there's no arena...the people that were the driving forces behind those two projects- we need to find them and get them on board.
Well, Pat Leahy got federal funding for the ECHO Center.
 

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Was the Davis Center a need? That went up after I graduated, and I never once thought- "hey guys, we really need a student center on campus". Cook commons was fine.

Also, the Echo Center is really cool, nice, and in a spectacular space on the waterfront. I've taken my family a number of times and we always enjoy it...but it's a museum about..... Lake Champlain? Was that really needed- but people are always there and it's packed every time I've gone- it's lake fish, algae, and like frogs...ok. Can't tell me Chittenden County wouldn't frequent a shiny new arena for events.


It's just wild there's no arena...the people that were the driving forces behind those two projects- we need to find them and get them on board.
Well, Pat Leahy got federal funding for the ECHO Center.
I know- but how many millions were spent on a museum for things I can find in less than 30minutes in the woods/river behind my parents house?

My over arching point is if people are willing to spend $40 admission to look at stuff they can look at in their back yards, then I think yes the community will support events at a brand new, modern, state of the art arena. There's clearly a supply/demand imbalance for entertainment options in the area.
 

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I do think a refurbished/rebuilt Memorial would increase attendance at UVM sporting events. However, it may change the demographic that attends events. Instead of the older population I suspect we will see a younger crowd with a much higher student population. At 2:00 game on Saturday turns into a 5:00 pub crawl on Church St.

Last weekend I attended the Middlebury quarterfinal playoff game (Matt St. Amour scored 23 in a victory) and the student section was awesome. Dressed in costume, loud, fully engaged and it made the game so much fun. It also highlighted what a poor showing UVM get's from it's student body at basketball games. It's really sad the lack support the teams gets from the student body given the success the program has had over the past decade. A downtown arena may be what's needed to breathe some life back in this fan base.
 

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Vermonters have always had a issue with small time thinking. It's the reason for so little jobs to offer and people lacking of things to do.

It pretty obvious the arena would have a huge benefit to the area.

Regardless Patrick will always need to be upgraded with better seating and that should be priority one as it's economically feasible.
 

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I do think a refurbished/rebuilt Memorial would increase attendance at UVM sporting events. However, it may change the demographic that attends events. Instead of the older population I suspect we will see a younger crowd with a much higher student population. At 2:00 game on Saturday turns into a 5:00 pub crawl on Church St.

Last weekend I attended the Middlebury quarterfinal playoff game (Matt St. Amour scored 23 in a victory) and the student section was awesome. Dressed in costume, loud, fully engaged and it made the game so much fun. It also highlighted what a poor showing UVM get's from it's student body at basketball games. It's really sad the lack support the teams gets from the student body given the success the program has had over the past decade. A downtown arena may be what's needed to breathe some life back in this fan base.
Call me skeptical on the Memorial proposal. Really going to need a to see a rendering there. Guess we will in the spring.

Also, many of those Middlebury students who show up and get loud are also athletes at the school. Middlebury has a great culture of its sports teams supporting each other. They also have a way bigger proportion of students who participate in sports at Midd. UVM, not so much. I recall when I was a student, there were a few well-known rifts among many of the sports teams, and some weren't on friendly terms. It's been a while so that might have changed, but outside a few soccer players and some of the women's basketball team, you don't see other athletes at basketball games, being loud and supportive.
 

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Middlebury has an enrollment of what, 2500 kids? UVM isn't a huge university but you're talking 4x as many ugtad students so "knowing everyone" in the way Middlebury students do isn't possible.
 

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Middlebury has more athletes at games in part because they have many more athletes. Middlebury has 707 athletes and UVM athletes which contributes to the overall higher metabolism in the campus sports community.
 

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The Memorial renovation would be cool, but I'm not sure there's enough space for parking and the arena, even if they displace the fire dept, the church, the library, the tattoo parlor and Midtown Motel and occupy the entire block
 
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