Become a digitalPLUS subscriber. 99¢ for 4 weeks.
Sports Auto Racing

Grand Prix not a 'game-changer'

The Grand Prix of Baltimore, the race that Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake promised would be a "game-changer" has come and gone ("Grand Prix of Baltimore canceled through 2015, and likely beyond," Sept. 13). Apparently, the game changed and we missed it

While I'm sure that the mayor's spokesman will put it in the best possible light, the citizens of Baltimore know that that this three-year experiment was a net loser. We spent public money, cut down public trees, disrupted public services and generally allowed ourselves to be inconvenienced to produce a race that ultimately reduced business for many downtown merchants and never made a ripple in Baltimore's image.

It's bad form to say "I told you so," but perhaps this could be a learning moment for our mayor. So many people told her so often that the Grand Prix was a bad idea that, had she only listened to her constituents, she could have been spared the embarrassment of announcing that this pet project failed miserably.

Sadly, the mayor's new pet project, Harbor Point, will not be so easy to erase. Once again the mayor has chosen to put her will above that of the people, and once again she has ignored the voices warning her of the consequences.

Like the Grand Prix, Harbor Point will go forward over the objection of most Baltimoreans. It will absorb city resources while benefiting few. It will depress the value of real estate in other parts of the city while further balkanizing our already unfair tax system. It risks traffic nightmares and a potential environmental disaster and will likely be a net negative to many current city merchants.

But, unlike the Grand Prix, Harbor Point will not be so easy to do away with, and the damage it does will last far longer.

Yet hope springs eternal. Maybe it's not too late. Maybe the mayor can learn to listen to her constituents instead of just her developer friends. It's not likely, but that would be a real game changer.

Mac Nachlas, Baltimore

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Baltimore's leaders veer off-course, again
    Baltimore's leaders veer off-course, again

    I guess we should be used to the ongoing incompetence and mismanagement that is Baltimore City, but it certainly is a depressing spectacle to watch our city "leaders" stumble from one screw-up to the next. I was thrilled when we finally got a first-class race event (for Americans, anyway)...

  • Grand Prix disliked? Who says?
    Grand Prix disliked? Who says?

    Detractors of the Baltimore Grand Prix (or most things) typically speak in broad terms using "no one liked" or "everyone was glad to see it go." These are typically false misnomers which apply only to their disgruntled clique of friends. I have friends who live in the immediate vicinity of...

  • Mayor won't admit truth about Grand Prix
    Mayor won't admit truth about Grand Prix

    In her recent commentary in The Sun, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake tries obfuscation to explain her sophomoric push for the Grand Prix, instead of admitting the truth — that it has been a financial flop, was a huge waste of taxpayer funds and tied the city in knots for a month each...

  • Where IndyCar failed, might NASCAR succeed?
    Where IndyCar failed, might NASCAR succeed?

    The letter from the co-founders of Viva House was spot on ("Plenty of things to regret about the Grand Prix," Sept. 19). What it failed to do was explain how the cancellation of the Baltimore Grand Prix would make things better. Outside of making them feel better.

  • Plenty of things to regret about sponsoring the Grand Prix
    Plenty of things to regret about sponsoring the Grand Prix

    Unlike Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, we do have regrets regarding the wisdom of sponsoring the Baltimore Grand Prix and similar events ("Rawlings-Blake: No regrets on the Grand Prix," Sept. 16).

  • The Grand Prix was never a good fit for Baltimore
    The Grand Prix was never a good fit for Baltimore

    It seems that when it comes to the doomed Baltimore Grand Prix, there is really no gray area. Baltimoreans either embraced it or abhorred it. I am in the latter category ("Grand Prix of Baltimore canceled through 2015, and likely beyond," Sept. 13).

  • Why did Baltimore neglect Grand Prix?
    Why did Baltimore neglect Grand Prix?

    I really do not understand the workings of the city. If Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and her people were trying to promote the Baltimore Grand Prix, how did the dates get booked for a college football game on the same weekend for next year, and a convention the following year ("Grand Prix...

  • The Grand Prix was good for Baltimore
    The Grand Prix was good for Baltimore

    I am sorry to see that the Grand Prix of Baltimore will not return ("Grand Prix of Baltimore canceled through 2015, and likely beyond," Sept. 13).

Comments
Loading