Monday, March 2, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Latest Astrodome proposal: massive indoor park

By
From page B2 | August 27, 2014 |

HOUSTON — The iconic but shuttered Houston Astrodome could come back to life as an indoor park that county officials say would be the world’s largest, according to the newest proposal for reusing the stadium and saving it from demolition.

The pitch came from Harris County Judge Ed Emmett, the county’s top elected official, during a news conference Tuesday on the floor of the 49-year-old county-owned building.

Emmett said while some people feel the structurally sound but dilapidated stadium should be demolished, he views the Astrodome as an asset that’s still useful.

“Before we just toss it on the trash heap, we need to take a look at what people in our community need,” he said.

Emmett said he came up with the idea while on a morning walk during one of Houston’s hot and humid days.

The proposal includes a green space for festivals and other gatherings, a possible amphitheater and an area for sports activities. Emmett pointed to the Astrodome’s upper seating levels Tuesday, saying they could be a good location for hiking, biking and fitness trails.

Opened in 1965, the so-called Eighth Wonder of the World once housed MLB’s Astros and the NFL’s former Oilers but hasn’t been home to a sports team since 1999 and has been closed to all events since 2009. Many of its brightly colored seats were sold to the public last year, along with the AstroTurf that once covered the floor.

It’s not in any immediate danger of being demolished after voters last year didn’t authorize $217 million in bonds to turn it into a multipurpose special events center. But local officials have continued to struggle to find an alternative use.

Other proposals have included a water park and sports memorabilia museum, but none has gained much traction.

Emmett did not offer a firm funding plan or a cost estimate for his indoor park proposal, though he suggested creating private-public partnerships to pay for it.

A detailed proposal on the indoor park idea could be presented by the Harris County Sports and Convention Corp. to Harris County commissioners, the group of local leaders who manage the county, within three months, officials said.

“I think it’s got legs,” Beth Wiedower, senior field officer with the National Trust for Historic Preservation, said of Emmett’s idea. Wiedower’s organization has been one of various groups that have been working to save the Astrodome from the wrecking ball. Wiedower said she is not aware of any other indoor park on the scale that Harris County is proposing.

The world’s first multipurpose domed stadium is also under consideration for a “state antiquities landmark” designation from the Texas Historical Commission that would make it more difficult to tear it down. But a decision from the commission is on hold.

Emmett’s idea comes after a $66 million proposal by the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo was unveiled last month that calls for destroying the structure to make way for green space and a 25,000-square-foot replica of the stadium that would house an Astrodome hall of fame.

The rodeo and the Houston Texans have been proponents of demolishing the Astrodome, which sits next to the sleek and modern NRG Stadium, where the NFL team plays and where the rodeo is held each year.

The stadium’s most prominent use in recent years was as a shelter for Louisiana residents displaced by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The National Park Service added the Astrodome to its National Register of Historic Places in January.

 

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

World War II spy shares tales of work behind enemy lines

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Whiteside ready to take Travis school board seat

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A1 | Gallery

I love to ‘read’ audiobooks

By Tony Wade | From Page: A2

 
Council to hear budget scenarios

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Fairfield High School celebrates black history

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Photos: Warm winter afternoon at Lagoon Valley Park

By Steve Reczkowski | From Page: A3, 4 Comments | Gallery

Free medical series targets senior health issues

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Pena Adobe hosts natural dye-making presentation

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
PublicStuff, an online app, set for Fairfield

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3

Beginning gardening series starts in March

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Literacy celebration returns this month

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

Photos: Vacaville 4-alarm house fire

By Steve Reczkowski | From Page: A4, 4 Comments | Gallery

 
IHOP takes part in National Pancake Day

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4, 3 Comments

Local governments schedule meetings this week

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Corner Store Gallery schedules open house

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

Weather for Monday, March 2, 2015

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B10

 
.

US / World

 
Kerry tries to dampen fuss over Israeli PM’s speech

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Hundreds of bills introduced by California lawmakers

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 1 Comment

 
California GOP recognizes gay faction of party

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 3 Comments

 
Storm brings rain, thunder, hail to Southern California

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Spacewalking astronauts finish extensive, tricky cable job

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Newspaper: Nurse who survived Ebola says hospital failed her

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Myanmar captures rare white elephant in western jungles

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Crowd kills girl suspected to be suicide bomber in Nigeria

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
New plane tracking to be tested after Malaysia jet mystery

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Activists say Islamic State releases 19 Syrian Christians

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Sierra Leone’s vice president in quarantine for Ebola

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
30,000 marchers in Moscow mourn slain Putin foe

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

.

Opinion

Your right to work for less

By Mike Kirchubel | From Page: A8, 51 Comments

 
Right fight in DC, but wrong reason

By Colbert I. King | From Page: A8

Editorial Cartoon: March 2, 2015

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
A night with a King

By Delon Jackson | From Page: A8, 1 Comment

 
.

Living

Today in History: March 2, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: March 2, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: March 3, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B5

 
Why timeouts only prolong the problem

By The Washington Post | From Page: B5, 1 Comment

Horoscopes: March 2, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A7

 
It’s never a good idea to point out how big a pregnant woman is

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A7

.

Entertainment

 
Will Smith’s ‘Focus’ tops box office with $19.1 million

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Lady Gaga, Vince Vaughn take charity polar plunge in Chicago

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
TVGrid March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A10

TVGrid March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B11

 
.

Sports

Lillard, Aldridge lead Blazers past Kings for 3rd in a row

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Curry scores 37, leads Warriors from 26 down to beat Celtics

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Jimmie Johnson pulls away for another Atlanta Sprint Cup win

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Giants reliever Strickland insists he’s tranquil on mound

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Indians open season with 12-4 win over Falcons

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2, 1 Comment

Oregon beats Stanford 73-70, clinches bye in Pac-12 tourney

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Process gets underway to carve up $60 million Sandusky fine

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Cal’s big run lifts Bears past Oregon State 73-56

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Former Washington basketball star Christian Welp dies at 51

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Sharks trade Sheppard to Rangers for draft pick

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
4,000 attend Jerry Tarkanian tribute in Las Vegas arena

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Garnett buys 1,000 tickets for fans for next T-wolves game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Poulter, Casey share lead at rain-delayed Honda Classic

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Blatter concerned by Russian soccer racism before World Cup

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Broadcasters propose FIFA election debate to Blatter, rivals

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Major league baseball’s 1st black Latino star Minoso dies

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Seller’s market for NHL teams as trade deadline nears

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Andy Sullivan wins Joburg Open for 2nd title this year

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
South Korea’s Amy Yang wins Honda LPGA Thailand

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Hannah hurls Bulldogs to 2-0 win over Campolindo

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

 
Oregon women upset No. 19 Stanford 62-55

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
This date in sports history for March 2, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez nearing 1st spring game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Fast and furious: Rousey looks to future after 14-second win

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

.

Business

Mimi’s adds breakfast items to menu

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

 
Samsung ditches plastic design, adds mobile pay in new phone

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

In Apple’s latest update, emojis get diverse

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
.

Obituaries

Jacqueline Mendes

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Lester Singer

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Baby Blues March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Rose is Rose March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Baldo March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Zits March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Garfield March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Sally Forth March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Get Fuzzy March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Frank and Ernest March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Dilbert March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Beetle Bailey March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Blondie March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
For Better or Worse March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Wizard of Id March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Pickles March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Peanuts March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
B.C. March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Cryptoquote March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Word Sleuth March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Bridge March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Crossword March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Sudoku March 3

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Baby Blues March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

B.C. March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Beetle Bailey March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Peanuts March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
For Better or Worse March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Dilbert March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Baldo March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Zits March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Rose is Rose March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Pickles March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Garfield March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Get Fuzzy March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Frank and Ernest March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Blondie March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Sally Forth March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Wizard of Id March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Sudoku March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Bridge March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Word Sleuth March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Crossword March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Cryptoquote March 2

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7