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Briefly Forgetting the Money, Imagine New Stadium Possibilities

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The medias lit up yesterday with word that the Falcons and the City of Atlanta are now considering just tearing down the Georgia Dome and building a new retractable roof stadium on one of a couple of other downtown sites. This would take the cost from $700 million to almost $950 million, a detail that is sure to get stuck in the craw of everyone that thought spending $700 million on a new stadium was absurd given all of the city's other pressing needs. But in the spirit of making lemonade from lemons, the announcement gave us an excuse to peruse the internets, looking at the newest generation of retractable roof NFL stadiums, like the ones in Dallas and Phoenix. There's no doubt these are fabulously cool structures, and that it would be really nice to have one in Atlanta. But the jury's still out on the practicality of the whole thing. Last time we were there, the Georgia Dome was still a perfectly acceptable place to watch a football game.