Blank’s plan is reasonable, although it’s likely and proper that the state and city will push him to foot even more of the stadium cost himself, rather than expecting taxpayers to pay so much for the party.
But if no deal can be worked out on a downtown stadium, state Rep. Alisha Thomas Morgan (D-Austell) has a “Plan B” in mind that would benefit both the Falcons and Cobb County. That is, build the new stadium in the Six Flags area of south Cobb. A “Six Flags Dome,” if you will.
She floated her plan, apparently off the cuff, toward the end of her two-hour town hall meeting Saturday at the South Cobb Community Center.
“Quite frankly, if the deal doesn’t work out at the state level and they are looking for somewhere to house their stadium, I would love to have it come to the Six Flags area,” Morgan said. “We would appreciate the economic development opportunity.”
The county has been exploring ways of revitalizing the area around Six Flags Over Georgia amusement park on Interstate 20, which is pocked by numerous aging apartment complexes and other rundown housing. The South Cobb Redevelopment Authority, which was recently reactivated by the Cobb Board of Commissioners, has been considering purchasing and demolishing some of those complexes, then flipping them to developers to spark revitalization. Building a stadium near Six Flags might have much the same result.
Meanwhile, if Cobb is interested in a “Plan C” for the Falcons, Marietta could consider persuading Blank to build his new stadium in the Franklin Road corridor along I-75, which is also blighted by rundown apartment complexes. But like a Six Flags site, a Franklin Road stadium would be easily accessible by interstate for most of the team’s fan base.
Blank’s push for a new stadium is still in the first quarter, so to speak, but it would behoove local officials to have their Plans B and C waiting on the bench for Blank to consider, just in case.