Stadiums and Arenas: Economic Development or Economic Redistribution?

13 Pages Posted: 4 Nov 2007

See all articles by Dennis Coates

Dennis Coates

University of Maryland, Baltimore County


This article explores the literature on the impact of professional sports teams and stadiums on their host communities. A large body of research has addressed these issues, some of it academic and much of it for hire by team and sport boosters. The broad conclusion of this literature is that stadiums and franchises are ineffective means to creating local economic development, whether that is measured as income or job growth. There may be substantial public benefits from stadiums and franchises, but those too are insufficient to warrant large-scale subsidies by themselves. In combination with consumer surpluses from attendance, however, subsidies may be efficient.

Suggested Citation

Coates, Dennis, Stadiums and Arenas: Economic Development or Economic Redistribution?. Contemporary Economic Policy, Vol. 25, No. 4, pp. 565-577, October 2007, Available at SSRN: or

Dennis Coates (Contact Author)

University of Maryland, Baltimore County ( email )

1000 Hilltop Circle
Baltimore, MD 21250
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