Why 4 stars? Because it's better than most arenas.
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And the improvements keep on coming! Every time I hit up a Lightning game , the arena continues to look better than it did before. It hardly resembles the building from last hockey season. The newest change, as of 1.1.12, is a new name. Along with the newspaper name change, the home of the Lightning is now the Tampa Bay Times Forum.
I give the Lightning's ownership credit for this; the Forum did not NEED renovations. It probably could have lasted a few more years in its current state, but they were very proactive in their improvements, unlike many sports venues. The concourses look great, every seat in the building has been replaced, the suites look phenomenal and some of the video equipment has been brought up to date.
There is still a need for an HD video board, because the SD board has a lot of technical problems with it. I would anticipate this addition in the summertime before the Republican National Convention. The "real lightning" that goes off when the Lightning scores a goal was thoroughly over-hyped. The initial renderings showed lightning shooting across the cat walks in magnificent fashion. In reality, it's just a controlled orb that's hard to see from a lot of seats and pretty underwhelming.
Parking, traffic leaving games/events, and the price of concessions are not enjoyable parts of the experience. However, these are universal issues at any sports venue. If you can find an arena or stadium in the country that does not deal with these problems, you have discovered a modern miracle.
The Forum is in a great location and by the end of the renovations this fall, it will be a top five arena in the country.
Why 3 stars? It used to be one of the best, but it's time for renovations.
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Years ago when I lived in Texas, Raymond James was the #1 NFL stadium that I wanted to visit. After attending several Bulls/Bucs games over the last few years, I think that it's still a decent venue but some money needs to go into a few updates.
The video boards are in desperate need of replacing. They are very awkwardly shaped and small by today's standards. There are no LED boards despite very ample room on the large facings between decks.
Outside of the pirate ship, the stadium is just boring in general. Nothing stands out to make your trip to the football game memorable. There's just a certain flare that's missing.
It's not a bad place to watch a game, but I think some creativity/pro-activity could be borrowed from the Lightning to improve the fan experience.
Stadium Ranking: #29 out of 30.
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I always thought that the Trop was the worst stadium in all of baseball, and then I went to Oakland. The Rays can be very thankful for that atrocity, as it allows them to avoid the cellar.
To ownership's credit, they have tried. They've tried to move, but are blocked by stupid politics. They've also tried to renovate the building, and it's come a very long way since my first visit in 2007. But as they say, you can only put so much lipstick on a pig.
You are still forced to stare out at the hideous cat walks, and the giant, exposed air ducts. The entire back wall of the dome is pretty tough on the eyes. Normally you have the skyline of the city here, or even in a retractable stadium, giant walls of glass to allow somewhat of a view outside. But the Trop is the only dome left where the roof doesn't open, so you're just stuck indoors, where baseball isn't meant to be played.
Even the turf is mis-matched colors of green, and I've really never understood that one. Normally the grass is full of really cool mow patterns that are distinct to each park.
The concourses aren't bad, but they and dark and just have that musty, grandma's basement smell. Normally they are open-air, with the aroma of hot dogs/nachos/beer tingling the nostrils.
The location has improved over the years, as Downtown St. Pete is a vibrant community. But Downtown is a very small area, and St. Pete as a whole is an awful place for a professional sports team. The demographic that they seek are families with a disposable income. The highest percentage of that group is found in Hillsborough County, and the Trop is located 25 miles from the center of Hillsborough.
All of these factors make the Trop an easy choice for the second-worst stadium in MLB.
Why 2 stars? Because I couldn't tell what teams played in this arena.
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I take the opportunity to go to as many sports venues as I can, so I've been to probably about half of the Pro Stadiums/Arenas in the country.
I was disappointed with Oracle Arena. It wasn't that bad of a building, but man was it non-descript. There was an alarming lack of team spirit throughout the concourses. It seemed like it was the Warrior's temporary home. I know it's easy for the fans to be apathetic about a team that is usually bad every season, but how hard would it be to put up some more player posters and team colors around the building?
The video board is one of the smallest and oldest in any pro arena I've been to, which made its presence very lacking. The roof is very interesting, in that if you are in the upper deck, you can't see much directly across from you because you are blocked by said, dented-in roof. I'm not saying that's a negative, but it's definitely unique.
The train is convenient in that, it takes you directly up to the Colesium and the arena, but it's certainly not in a "happening" part of town. There's nothing at this train stop outside of these two buildings. The homeless are bad in general in this part of the country, but one was particularly aggressive toward me as I was leaving the game. I guess I can't hold the acts of panhandlers against Oracle Arena, but a couple extra security guys or officers wouldn't hurt.
Bottom line: One of, if not THE worst professional arena I have been to.
Why 4 stars? Because it's nice, but they could have done better.
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My number one complaint probably isn't far because two NFL teams share this stadium (how stupid is that, by the way? I hate the Lakers/Clippers effect too.)
I just hate how un-team centric this venue is. The walls are plain and barren of team spirit... not unlike the new Yankee stadium. Let's celebrate and acknowledge the teams that play here fellas who run this facility, ey?
The only other complaint is that, while the public transit is nice... wow are those lines awful to wait through after the game. Seems like a situation where all available trains should be sitting around and waiting on Sunday afternoons. There probably isn't another place around town that is letting out 70,000+ people simultaneously, so let's get our priorities straight New Jersey Transit!
All that being said, I did enjoy watching a game here. The stadium is built straight-up, which allowed our upper/corner seats to still feel not very far away from the action. Everything still has that new stadium smell. The video boards are solid. In general, I just enjoyed our vantage point, despite really crappy seats.
Solid, yet unspectacular job, New Jersey.
Why 3 stars? Because it needs a bit of a facelift.
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And as I say that, apparently they are closed for renovations. Good job NOA!
I attended a game last season for my first trip, and can definitely see the potential. Something has to be done about the rainbow colored seats, first of all. Wow... who thought that was a good idea?
Sometimes that kind of hideousness makes me wonder if in 20 years, we will look at the stylings of 2014 and think, "Jeez, we were so stupid back then." But then again, I'm pretty sure rainbow anything has never been a good idea on any level.
The video board and LED's appear a bit ancient. Anything not HD in this day and age needs to be gutted and burned in a fire. Sorry, that was harsh. How about just gutted and donated to a part of the world that's still rocking tube TV's, and would be grateful for a giant one?
As with most sporting arenas, the integration of better food options and more food/drink variety would never hurt anyone. Hopefully that's a part of the plan.
Why 4 stars? Because they definitely do everything that they can to get people here.
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Despite having one of the most apathetic fan bases in professional sports, the Jaguars really pull out all of the stops to get people in this stadium.
They just installed the largest video boards in the country. They have actually pools in the stadium that you can watch the game from. Their mascot does a backflip off of the top of a light tower at the beginning of the game.
It's absolutely nuts.
I guess the only thing holding it back from 5-stars for me is that it just looks like an old college barn of a stadium from the outside. Technically, it's the oldest football stadium in the country, as there are still parts in place from the original Fairfield Stadium of 1928.
The video show is great, and the screens are the size of 3 normal video boards. I'm sure the pool tickets are the cost of something I will never be able to dream of affording, but it's still pretty cool just to see them. And the mascot does the most daring, acrobat thing I have ever seen a mascot do. It's like Cirque du Soleil stuff, except he's wearing a giant, fury suit that he can barely see out of him. (I assume for no good reason that it's a he.)
Probably a 4.5 star rating rounded slightly down for me.
|These are places I enjoy drinking things that usually lead to bad behavior and fatness.||The only proper way to say Coffee, is the way they pronounce it in Jersey. And the only way to properly drink it, is if you purchase it from one of these fine Bay Area locations.|
|Things get crazy in Jax.||Those may exclamation points in the title and not stars...but that doesn't take away from the fact that these are my favorites!|
|I like fans that keep you cool and sports fans, but I personally, am not a fan of these places.||Downtown St Pete!|
|Concerts, comedians, etc||Good. Burgers. Tampa Bay.|
|The best my home has to offer||American that's fresh to death in Tampa Bay|
"My opinions are nice."
Tampa, FL, Vereinigte StaatenYelper seit
Januar 2012Dinge, die ich mag
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