We just attended the Pro Bowl at Aloha Stadium, and have some suggestions that might solve the “problems” that the state seems to be having with it.

First “problem”: Do we need a new and larger stadium? Emphatically No! We seldom can fill Aloha Stadium, and even the sold-out Pro Bowl, the largest, most well-attended event of the year, had hundreds of empty seats.

Why should we build a ”’new”’ stadium that will cost millions of tax-payer dollars, when we already have one that is more than big enough, centrally located and in generally good condition.

Yes, the Cor-Ten “non-rusting” steel has rusted. Surprise. Hawaii is an environmental test for any material: Heat, high humidity and salt-spray are the exact conditions that engineers use to evaluate corrosion of materials in test chambers. Cor-Ten Steel was introduced in the ’50s as a rust-resistant material. It is resistant to rust, but is ”’not”’ rust-proof. Even so, it is still far cheaper to maintain our existing facility than it would be to replace it with a new stadium, which will also require maintenance. Just think of the difference in the cost of doing some body work, rust proofing and re-painting a1975 car versus the expense of buying a new Buick. Sure, a new Buick would be great, but aren’t we on a budget? And the Buick will soon need maintenance, too.

Of course, we could try to get the money from the Federal Government, right? Oh, I forgot … the money they so generously send to us is the same money that we send to them, minus a large “handling fee.” …

But the cement pad under the “movable” stands needs replacing, at considerable expense. Simple solution: Don’t move it. Make it a permanent football facility, and play baseball games — college or professional — at the ”’new”’ University of Hawaii field.

Need more seats? Get some inexpensive additional capacity by filling in the pie-shaped corners where the stands used to be moved (for baseball games) with ”’seats.”’ At least 6,000 more seats could be easily added, giving us a total capacity of over 60,000 … enough for almost any foreseeable event, except maybe an Elvis Concert, which seems unlikely.

If you need even more capacity, raise the four center (formerly movable) stands about 20 or 30 feet, and add more about 3,000 “premium” seats underneath.

Oh, you say you need special “luxury boxes” for the rich guys and/or politicians? Tough, make ’em watch the game, instead of eating, drinking and schmoozing.

There, problems solved. Next?

”’Bud Weisbrod is a resident of Honolulu and can be reached via email at”’ mailto:weisbrod@myexcel.com

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