People on the KCAL list might find the following webpages useful (they are mostly American). Apologies if this information has been circulated previously on the list.
1. An article from May 2003 on why publicly funded stadiums don't pay off:
A 2002 report, "Identifying the real costs and benefits of sports facilities," by the urban planning professor quoted in the article is available at:
2. Fieldofschemes.com is the companion website to Field of Schemes: How the Great Stadium Swindle Turns Public Money Into Private Profit (Common Courage Press), by Joanna Cagan and Neil deMause. Since 1998, they say they "have been casting a critical eye on the roughly $2 billion a year in public subsidies that go toward building new pro sports facilities."
The site includes a list of activist groups in various cities, including bread not circuses in Toronto and Olympic Watch in Vancouver.
There are also links to economic studies of sports stadium development.
3. "Are new stadiums worth the cost?" This is a very good article by Roger G. Noll (Standford Univ) and Ander Zimbalist (Smith College)...The answer, by the way, is no. The article is available from the Bread not Circuses website.
The same authors have edited a book with 15 collaborators called Sports, Jobs and Taxes (1997). It looks at the economic development arguments put forward by stadium advocates. They say: "In every case [studied in the book], the conclusions are the same. A new sports facility has an extremely small (perhaps even negative) effect on overall economic activity and employment. No recent facility [the article is several years old] appears to have earned anything approaching a reasonable return on investment."
Mary Louise Adams