Re "NFL Stadium Plan Outlined," May 16: If we in L.A. "need" a football stadium by the Staples Center--and I doubt that we do--here are a couple of suggestions to make it less of a blot on the landscape and more a part of the city:
* Improve transit access, limit car parking and put the parking under the stadium. That way the stadium can be part of the fabric of the city, much as the classic East Coast stadiums have been, and not be an isolated hulk in the middle of a vast and usually empty space.
* Fill most of the ground-floor perimeter of the stadium with retail and eating places, places that locals and visitors would use even on nongame days. With the stadium right on the street, this would not only be feasible, it would also create jobs and commerce every day of the year, with those shops and restaurants benefiting all the more on game days.
Otherwise, we'll be building yet another hole downtown, doing nothing to help L.A. grow into a real city.
Paul Tagliabue has made it clear that the L.A. Coliseum would not be suitable for an NFL team because there is no place for the rich people to sit. It's funny that for two Olympics and numerous other events, it seemed to work just fine: The haves and have-nots simply got together to watch a sporting event.
I don't see anything about considering available areas in the San Fernando Valley for a new stadium complex. There should be plenty of space, transportation and other amenities available for this in various places there. This would create jobs and other benefits to the area, as well as avoiding even more congestion in downtown L.A. Another slight for the Valley?
One of the last things L.A. needs is a new football stadium. What we do need are new schools--85 of them. Our young people must endure overcrowding in classrooms, buildings that are falling apart, traveling hours a day to and from school on buses and a district that can't seem to get its act together.
This proposed new stadium would be going up in the section of the city where new schools are needed most. Not one cent of taxpayer money or government bonds should be spent on this millionaires' playground for the stars. If L.A. wants a football team that badly, let it play in the Coliseum. Don't build a new stadium; build our children new schools.