Mount Davis (Oakland)

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Mount Davis

Mount Davis, or Mt. Davis, is a section of 10,000 capacity seating at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, California, United States. It was built in 1995 at the behest of Oakland City Council with the intent of bringing the Los Angeles Raiders American football team back to Oakland and is named after former Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis.

History[edit]

In 1982 the Oakland Raiders left Oakland because of the city refusing to upgrade the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, leaving the Oakland Athletics baseball team as the sole tenants.[1] In 1995, the city made a deal with Davis that they would increase the capacity of the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum in exchange for him bringing the Raiders back to Oakland.[2] The result was a structure that became known as Mount Davis after Raiders owner Al Davis.[3] There was criticism when Mount Davis was built as it obstructed views of the Oakland Hills.[3][4] It was completed in 1996 but was criticised for being too steep and took spectators too far away from the field of play.[3] It had been noted to negatively affect baseball as while it provided a shield against the sun for outfielders chasing fly balls, it was an enclosed concrete stadium and had lost capacity for the Athletics.[5]

Mount Davis cost approximatly $500 million to build.[6] From then it cost the city of Oakland $20 million a year in debt repayments, which had the side effect of the city having to lay off police officers.[7] In 2015, Alameda County purchased $100 million of the city's stadium debt.[7]

Tarp[edit]

The Tarp on Mount Davis

Owing to problems with attendance figures, in 2006 the Oakland Athletics installed a layer of tarp with their club name on it over all of Mount Davis' top tier seating as they couldn't sell advertising space on it due to city regulations.[8][9] Though the tarp can be removed the Athletics management refuse to do so unless the team makes the World Series as they claim it makes the stadium more intimate.[10][11] This policy was maintained to the chagrin of many fans during the 2012 American League Division Series where all other seats were sold out with demand for more tickets but the tarp was not removed.[11]

In 2013, the Oakland Raiders also started covering Mount Davis with tarp owing to the National Football League television blackout policies where teams are obliged to black out the game if they couldn't sell more than 85% stadium capacity. Over the previous few years, the Raiders had been forced to black out more home games than were televised.[12] This had the effect of making the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum the smallest stadium in the National Football League.[12] Under NFL rules, Mount Davis must remain tarped for the duration of the season even if the Raiders make the NFL playoffs.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Good guys wear black". ESPN. 2003-12-01. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  2. ^ McDonald, Jerry (2016-07-28). "Oakland Raiders to reduce capacity of stadium in order to avoid blackouts". The Mercury news. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  3. ^ a b c Axisa, Mike (2013-11-30). "PHOTO: Oakland Coliseum before Mount Davis". CBS Sports. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  4. ^ Christopher Hansen (2012-12-20). "The Future of the Raiders Is Tied to Getting a New Stadium". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  5. ^ McKnight, Kirk (2015). The Voices of Baseball: The Game's Greatest Broadcasters Reflect on America's Pastime. Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 126–127. ISBN 1442244488. 
  6. ^ Matier & Ross (2016-10-10). "As Raiders look to Las Vegas, Coliseum debt hangs over East Bay". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  7. ^ a b By Matier & Ross. "Alameda County negotiating with Oakland to pay off Coliseum debt". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  8. ^ Brice Wallace (2006-05-05). "It's a wrap: Kaysville company gets the Oakland Athletics stadium all decked out". Deseret News. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  9. ^ Berry, Allison (2012-05-09). "5. O.Co Coliseum, Oakland - Top 10 Worst Stadiums in the U.S.". Time. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  10. ^ Craggs, Tommy (1989-10-17). "Why Your Stadium Sucks: Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum". Deadspin. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  11. ^ a b Carolyn Jones (2012-10-05). "A's refuse to remove tarp". SFGate. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  12. ^ a b Tafur, Vic (2013-02-06). "Raiders will tarp top of Mount Davis". SFGate. Retrieved 2017-03-10. 
  13. ^ Caldwell, Dave. "Why the Oakland Raiders' stunning turnaround could be bittersweet for fans". The Guardian. Retrieved 2017-03-10.