Editorials

Greenroom Blue Jays Talk: How to Improve the Rogers Centre

If Rogers put you in charge of a $400 million dollar budget, how would you improve the Rogers Centre?

In his final year, President Paul Beeston said the Rogers Centre could use a $200-$400 million renovation.

One of the reasons Mark Shapiro was hired by Rogers was because he has experience in renovating stadiums. This week the Blue Jays will visit his piece de resistance: Progressive Field.

If Rogers put you in charge of a $400 million dollar budget, how would you improve the Rogers Centre?

Efthimios Nasiopoulos

We definitely need natural grass on the field. We also need to work on aesthetics. How? More hardwood…yes more hardwood. There is way too much concrete in the Rogers Centre. It looks like an underground parking lot. If you walk into the ball park and see oak trims and some maple walnut paneling, it would feel like Thanksgiving in there. Add free wifi and gourmet poutine and we’re cooking. Off track betting is probably something no one thinks of. Let’s make some money on the side for those fans that need an inning or two to bet the ponies.

Nathan Macintosh

I’d take ‘Centre’ off of the side of the building and put ‘Skydome’ there. The Rogers Skydome. There’s ZERO reason this can’t still be called the Skydome. It is a dome that opens up to the sky! Jays won two world series in the Skydome! Rogers Skydome. And I KNOW this wouldn’t cost $200-$400 million to do. I’d do that, build two bigger bathrooms in the building, and use the other $380 million to help people pay off their Rogers bills.

Monty Scott

I have no question. I’d spend part of the money by subsidizing the drink prices to lower them to normal, non hostage situation rates. Then I would spend the rest on sledgehammers and have the staff smash the metal detectors and other airport security devices that are installed with the sole purpose of catching people bringing in their own regular priced booze.

Jay Wells L’Ecuyer

First of all… The crippling anxiety that just washed over me while reading I’d be in charge of 400 million (imaginary) dollars proves that I’m dangerously unqualified to spend any real money. I’m a comedian! My ‘big money decision’ is laundry or groceries when I can only afford one so, sure, I guess that dirt infield looks great! Maybe some long black strands all over the roof of the dome so it looks even more like the CN tower’s scrotum. Then maybe give the rest to Toronto comedians, so we can all be rich “Brand Ambassadors” hangin’ at every home game!

Fraser Young

As a bandwagon fan, all I know is what I hear. And I heard that when Rogers bought the Skydome, it cost like 12 bucks, so they owe us some upgrades. I also read that fans are allowed to bring their own food into the game. Therefore, Rogers should spend 400 million dollars on high quality microwaves to go under each seat so fans don’t have to eat cold pasta. Sure, you could just let your food heat up in the sun, but that seems unhygienic. Also, a couple of Robocops to patrol the 500 level would be real cool.

Ian Gordon

Auto-Flooring, like in airports, but all over, so as soon as I set foot in the Roger’s Centre I don’t have to walk at all. Also, a Beer Tap at every seat the automatically fills your beer, and is equipped with a robotic voice that whispers to you periodically that “you’re a good person.” The snacks would be handled via coat-racks full of giant soft pretzels, that, are of course free of charge. We would top it all off with an elaborate Blue Jay sanctuary. The Birds will be trained to be set loose/unleashed on the opposing team at any moment as our “secret weapon”, but only once a game.

Chris Robinson

Toronto is a city within a park. So why not bring the park to the plate? With $400 million I would release Toronto native animals to live in the Rogers Centre. Blue jays, albino squirrels, Ikea monkeys, you name it. Who wouldn’t want to see a raccoon give birth at 3rd base during the 7th inning stretch? Plus home field advantage would really come into effect when the visiting team has to evade rabies crazed possums in their dugout. One, two, three swipes and he’s out to go get a vaccination.

Aisha Brown

MTV Cribs has taught me that two key ingredients are needed to class up any structure… So my first upgrade would be to outfit each level of The Rogers Centre with a bowling alley and a tiger-arium. Also, some of the old timey (non-racist) charm of baseball should be brought back. Let’s hire kids to dress and talk like 1940’s newspaper boys. They’d sell roasted peanuts, pickpocket strangers, and say things like “Gee Mister, ya think the Jays’ll clinch the pennant?”. Also, Jamaicans. All sporting events are made 80% more entertaining when you add the presence of Jamaicans.

Hunter Collins

I can’t stand parents who whine about the ballpark being an unsafe place to bring their babies. I say invest the money in developing a sort of smushy beer can that doesn’t hurt when it careens into a baby’s head. Also maybe fill it with some kinda new beer that’s good for babies. And double-also, would it hurt to have a picture of a hot naked babe on the can? Triple-also: make the beer a cool new kind of “free” beer.

That, or four words: “ROUGNED ODOR DEATH RAY”.

Jhanelle Dennis

Solar panels; just because we bleed blue, don’t mean we can’t be green! 476,000 kWh are wasted per year from the sunlight reflecting off Stroman’s smile, Goins’ scalp & John Gibbon’s savage unblinking stares. Also, remember Drake’s “Hotline Bling” Booth at the Air Canada Centre? HELLO. Why not install Jamiroquai’s “Virtual Insanity” Bandwagon Booth?! The perfect place for fans to retreat to when the Jays aren’t doing well, where they can relive the glory of the early 90s while trying not to spill their $27 beer on the moving floor.

Keith Pedro

Okay so $400 million budget on the Skydome building? I would do what any shady team owner would do. I would claim to make $400 million in renos but pocket most of the money. I would have a press conference to tell people that I am doing some new architectual upgrades with Vandalay Industries and their lead architect Art Vandalay. I would put 2-ply toilet paper sheets in the toilet, upgrade the turf and use the rest of the money to install personal box for me at the Skydome. I’m talking plasma TVs, those new curvy ones and all kinds of expensive linen. I would watch the games while petting one of those white tigers and have Celine Dion sing the play by play to me. Not mention have a laser tag facility in my vip box washroom. Dripping swagooo!!!

Eytan Millstone

Hot tubs. I don’t know where, or how many, but I think people should be able to kick back in a Jacuzzi while watching the Jays. Then, of course, I would funnel as much of that money into our player salary budget and buy a goddamn World Series ring. We don’t need no fancy things, just rings baby. Just rings.

Barry Taylor

The Rogers Centre needs more Ted Rogers statues. He doesn’t have to be holding a clipboard in everyone necessarily. Actually, yes he does. But the clipboards can have names of retired players and different fiscal reports on them. The big celebration will be Ted Rogers Statue Night. Once a year, everyone in attendance gets one. Life size. No more bobble heads, give the people what they want.

SP-STATUES8APRIL Toronto, Canada - April 8 - A life sized bronze statue of Ted Rogers stands on the corner near gate 5 of the Rogers Centre. Part of the "Countdown to the home opener' series. Why is there a statue of Ted Rogers, but no players in front of the Rogers Centre? April 8, 2015 Richard Lautens/Toronto Star

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