However there are certain positives that come along with stadium construction. Building from the ground up gives new parks environmental opportunities that existing parks don’t have. Both Nationals Park and Citi Field have energy-efficient field lighting and waterless and low-flow plumbing fixtures, for example, and both designs incorporate green (vegetative) roofs and white (reflective) roofs to battle the heat-island effect.
Second, newer stadiums’ water supply systems use rainwater off the roof, and the stadiums use drainage of nearby factories. Therefore, the stadiums always have enough water. Another advantage is the newer security systems. There are zoned alarms to pinpoint where a problem has occurred. Older systems just have one general alarm, leaving security personnel to direct officials to the exact point of the emergency.
With the “green” initiatives come a few problems. Baseball stadiums that converted to football stadiums have more of an obtuse angle between the stands. This makes the football viewing farther away, and in some cases partially obscured like in Candlestick Park.
Baseball stadiums represent the place where it all comes together–the intersection of hard work and entertainment, enjoyment and exertion, exhilaration and defeat. Someone always leaves a winner and someone always leaves a loser, but the stadium never leaves. Baseball data on free agency and arbitration reveal that both systems of salary determination are similarly structured, meaning that players can use either one of the methods and obtain similar gains in salaries. The higher salaries on average for free agents reflect their years of experience, rather than a better process of salary determination.
Football is typically played in a stadium while basketball and hockey are typically played in an arena, although many of the larger arenas hold more spectators than do the stadiums of smaller colleges or high schools. And there are exceptions. Football, basketball and hockey teams regularly extort city and state politicians for taxpayer subsidies. During the twentieth century, more than $20 billion (measured in 1997 dollars) has been spent on major league stadiums and arenas, including a minimum of $14.7 billion in taxpayer subsidies.