Public schools

$70 Million Now Being Spent on a High School Football Stadium by 'Visionary' Texas School District

Was supposed to cost $63.5 million just three month ago


McKinney ISD

The McKinney Independent School District in Texas will now be spending nearly $70 million on a football stadium for its three high school teams. When voters approved the spending in May, the stadium was supposed to cost about $63.5 million. But the school district says labor and concrete costs went up 50 percent between the time the plan was approved and the final bids came in, as local TV station WFAA reports.

"We decided this is something that we'll be using for 50 or 60 years so we want to do it right," a spokesperson for the school district told WFAA. The district says it has unspent money from other bonds it can use to plug the gap.

Back in May, when a majority of voters initially approved the spending, the school district's super intendendent, Rick McDaniel, insisted school leaders were "visionaries." "And we believe we have a vision for McKinney ISD that will propel us forward for a long time," he said in May. Not visionary enough, apparently, to anticipate price increases or cost over-runs.

Supporters of the stadium proposal argued it would increase economic activity in the area, and that the district hadn't built a football stadium in 1965, which is located in a residential area.

McKinney is about 35 miles from Dallas, which has a little-known professional football franchise that may attract people in the area too. Arlington, the city the Dallas franchise is located in, raised taxes to pay for a new stadium, and is reportedly paying it back faster than expected, but Dallas was expected to get more of the benefits from the Cowboys hosting the Super Bowl in 2011 than Arlington. The McKinney school district, too, has been raising taxes. A hike in 2013 was blamed on the state cutting funding, although the decision to spend $70 million on a high school stadium illustrates the moral hazards involved in state funding of local government operations.

And while high school football is a big deal in Texas, even stadiums for major league teams, let alone minor league ones, are bad deals for cities that choose to spend, or "invest", on them.

Related: Reason TV's "Sports Stadiums Are Bad Investments. So Why Are Cities Still Paying for Them?"

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  1. “We decided this is something that we’ll be using for 50 or 60 years months so we want to do it right,”


  2. ‘Visionary’ Texas School District

    I suppose narcissistic vainglory is a kind of vision.

    1. $70 for ritualized violence, and we the taxpayers are forced to pay it…

      Can we just spare a bare few million for ritualized sex, too, at the local naked-titty-dancing club? A litlle CHOICE here, please?

      Ritualized sex is FAR less likely to result in cracked ribs & broken spines & damaged brains than football, BUT, NOOOO, no tax dollars for ritualized sex… Tax dollars to SHUT HER DOWN!

      How do we start a movement, Free the Naked Titties-Skin, Just Say NO to Pigskin!

      1. Naked live pepple-skin, the heck with dead pig-skin! The ritualized violence-worshippers are just a bunch of animalistic-necrophiliacs, is all, and us latter-day hippies, make-love-not-war types, are just shut down and shit down the pig-hole, while the “righteous” ones sneer in our general direction! What gives, pepples?!?!? WWJD, would Jesus have favored love or war? Live/love people skin, or dead pigskin??!

  3. OT: Trump wants to give the pigs back their military weaponry…..ent-police


    1. How else is he going to deport 11 million rapists?

      1. Some of them, I assume, are good people.


    2. How is he giving anything “back?” When was it taken away?

      1. President Obama issued Executive Order 13688 in January

        The memo references Recommendation 1.1 to EP 13688 which prohibits the following items in police departments:

        Tracked Armored Vehicles: Vehicles that provide ballistic protection to their occupants and utilize a tracked system instead of wheels for forward motion.
        Weaponized Aircraft, Vessels, and Vehicles of Any Kind: These items will be prohibited from purchase or transfer with weapons installed.
        Firearms of .50?Caliber or Higher
        Ammunition of .50?Caliber or Higher
        Grenade Launchers: Firearm or firearm accessory designed to launch small explosive projectiles.
        Bayonets: Large knives designed to be attached to the muzzle of a rifle/shotgun/long gun for the purposes of hand?to?hand combat.
        Camouflage Uniforms: Does not include woodland or desert patterns or solid color uniforms.

        Read more at http://thefreethoughtproject.c…..YV6pYmP.99

  4. It’s Texas, Ed.

    The educational system is just there to support football.

    1. I remember a grad assistant in History who came to us from LSU. He described the incoming freshman classes as simply a vehicle for getting thousands of young men LSU football tickets for a year, before they dropped out.

  5. I live about 10 – 15 min. south of McKinney.

    Between where I live (Plano) and McKinney, is another suburb, called Allen.

    And wouldn’t you know it, Allen has become the crown jewel in the Texas high school football crown, with it’s new $60 million stadium that just opened a few years ago.

    McKinney immediately went about planning how to out-do Allen in the most ridiculous case of penis-envy I’ve ever heard of. And now they’ve gone and done it.

    1. Post-script: I went to see my old high school, Plano East, play at the Allen stadium a few years back when it opened, just to check the place out. Hole-ee shit is that a nice stadium. For a fuckin’ high school.


      1. Surely you’re not calling for mindless austerity.

    2. Holy fucking shit.

      Check out the palace where my HS plays.

        1. LOL

          I think our baseball was played in a nearby city park.

      1. Looks reminiscent of my alma mater, except that our fair city upgraded the track in an attempt to get the state track and field championships.

        It’s a municipal stadium the rest of the year, and people can run laps on the track.

    3. My alma mater’s new stadium. Compared to the old stadium from when I went there, now converted to strictly track and field use (I think). And we’re not even that good (never have been).

    4. And wouldn’t you know it, Allen has become the crown jewel in the Texas high school football crown, with it’s new $60 million stadium that just opened a few years ago.

      Sounds like they really got their money’s worth. /sarc

      A major cause of controversy in the Dallas suburb of Allen, Texas, the Allen Eagle Stadium cost around $65 million to build and was condemned less than two years after its completion.

      [Emphasis added]

      1. Jesus Christ, how can anyone care that much about a fucking High School game?

        1. I’m guessing you don’t know much about football in Texas.

          1. The Civic Religion of Texas.

        2. TEXAASSS. FOOT. BAWL.

          Woo-woo-woo-woo! *victory fist*

          It’s insanity land down here. Don’t question. And don’t lock eyes during The Season. Don’t do it.

    5. Allen needed that stadium Gojira. It needed it. And since McKinney has done it, of course Frisco won’t be too far behind. And as soon as Van Alstyne is considered a suburb of Dallas, it’ll get one too.

      Thank god Addison doesn’t even have a school district. Of course, the down side to that is my daughter will have to go to a shitty DISD school.

      1. my daughter will have to go to a shitty DISD school

        What? Not a C-FB ISD school? Not that it’s is necessarily better than DISD, but one can hope…

        1. The way the zoning for schools is done is frankly quite bizarre.

  6. At least the voters got some sort of say in it.

    I don’t remember being allowed to have any say in the billions of dollars lavished on football and baseball stadiums around NYC in recent years.

    1. /sheds a tear for the Nassau Coliseum…

      1. Oh right, hockey too.

    2. Maryland voters didn’t have a say because most of the state constitution, at least as the state’s highest court reads it, is just one long FYTW clause.

  7. My local high school has a really nice field that got a makeover a few years ago.

    It doesn’t however, look dramatically different than the school I went to as a kid – that football field was created bulldozing the earth to make two hills, slap the concrete & bleachers on the hills and make the field down the middle.

    Bonus: the woods on the hills were a great place to drink and make out.

  8. “And we believe we have a vision for McKinney ISD that will propel us forward for a long time,” he said in May.
    Steve Jobs had a vision.
    Joan of Arc had visions.
    I think these guys are leaning more toward the latter.

  9. “We decided this is something that we’ll be using for 50 or 60 years so we want to do it right,” a spokesperson for the school district told WFAA.

    Future economics classes can see firsthand what depreciation looks like.

  10. It’s Texas, and it’s HS football. I’m shocked they’re not spending twice that much.

    1. My god

    2. In some parallel universe there is a government that does not tax paupers who can’t afford a ticket to a professional sports event to build the venue for billionaires to profit from and otherwise enjoy such events. But not in this universe.

    3. God damn that city is fucking retarded. The best thing that Laura Miller ever did was tell Jerry Jones to suck a dick when he was looking to move from the stadium in Irving.

      1. Arlington really is a hole. Fuck that place.

        1. Arlington: It’s the best of neither world!

          /a Metroplex joke, if you will.

  11. My local texas isd built a $30M 10,000 seat stadium a few years ago. Includes a swimming complex and hosts three high schools.

    It was funded by a bond election, but it was packaged with additional spending for the high schools not served by the stadium.

    How much is a 10k seat stadium supposed to cost?

    They also lease it out to a couple minor league teams but I don’t know what that is worth.

  12. Other High School Stadiums in North Texas (2016 $)

    Dragon Stadium – Southlake ISD – $21 million
    Kincade Stadium – Dallas ISD – $40 million
    Collins Sports Complex – Denton ISD – $29 million
    Newsom Stadium – Mansfield ISD – $35 million
    Eagle Stadium – Allen ISD – $63 million

    But they will all pale before Frisco ISD’s The Star complex, a joint venture between the City of Frisco, Frisco ISD, and the Dallas Cowboys that is budgeted at around a cool $1 billion. The Star will also be used for the Cowboys headquarters and training facilities, and they’re reportedl to be kicking in $800 million.

    1. Kincade Stadium – Dallas ISD – $40 million

      $30 million of it went to the oversaturated pastel lighting alone.

  13. Private school proposes to raise prices by $8,000 per student to pay for new stadium. Majority of parents look to send their children to competing schools that have better ratings, and cheaper pricing………….

    Hmm, if parents refused to pay their property taxes in protest to such waste…..what would happen to them? First letters, fines, and then confiscation of their property. What if they resist? I don’t think the arm of the state will show up with flowers.

  14. I’ve long said the best thing you could do for education in Texas is outlaw high school football. The grotesque spending on this stadium is one of many symptoms of how high school football undermines actual education in Texas schools. There are also the fabulous sums spent on operations of high school football – coaches, so many coaches, uniforms, equipment, travel, etc. And there are the distortions of culture and priorities it imposes.

  15. This story is actually making me reconsider my escape plan to Texas upon retirement.

    1. With any luck, all the California transplants will turn us Blue by 2020.


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