Arena Seating Upgrade Illustrates Problem

Once we’ve started down this road, it’s hard to turn back. I’m referring to the $1.7 million that the Board of Sedgwick County Commissioners approved for upgrades to the seating in the downtown Wichita arena.

Evidently there’s a new type of raised seating that makes for a better audience experience for those seated on the floor.

The problem is that having built the arena, we need to do what we can to see that it earns a profit and doesn’t become a burden to the taxpayers. (I’m aware that there’s a contract with the management company that shields the county from losses. I’m sure that if there are several years of losses, that contract won’t be renewed under those terms.)

Even new commissioner Karl Peterjohn realizes this. The Wichita Eagle story reported “New Commissioner Karl Peterjohn prefaced his affirmative vote by saying that although he opposed the arena before voters approved it, now that it’s being built, he wants it to be the best it can be.”

Evidently some people aren’t satisfied with this. A comment left to the news story interpreted his words to mean “if this fails miserably, I will accept no blame and quickly point fingers. But if it turns out to completely revitalize downtown and be a huge success like I hope it’s not, I’ll gladly take responsibility for it.” The commenter added “What a joke.”

Besides this commenter’s inability to accept victory and move on, some comment writers are terribly confused, one blaming Wichita city government for the mess. The arena is entirely a project of Sedgwick County.

1 Comment

  • wichitator -

    This critics of Peterjohn’s arena comment is like the man who would kick even if he had no feet. I doubt that anything this county commissioner could do would make this person happy.

    I wonder: does this critic live in Goddard?

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