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Astrodome Measure Defeated; Destined For Demolition

by: Adam Spolane, Sports Radio 610
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Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

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HOUSTON (CBS Houston) – The Astrodome might just become a part of memories and old videos on the internet.

Harris County Proposition 2, dubbed the “Save the Dome” by its supporters failed by a 53-47 margin despite there being no real organized effort to defeat it.

“(We’re) pretty surprised (the measure failed)”, Executive Director of the Harris County Sports & Convention Corporation Willie Loston told Sports Radio 610 after the returns came in. “Our preliminary indications looked like it was a 50/50 proposition, and perhaps it was at sometime, but something changed.”

Local leaders have hinted towards the fact that the famous stadium would likely be torn down without the passing of this measure.

“There is no other plan to re-purpose the dome,” Ed Emmett, the Harris County Judge and presiding officer of the Harris County Commissioner’s Court said after the votes came in. “It is a decision that will have to be made by the commissioners court.”

The plan on the table to turn the Astrodome into an exhibit hall was the “Eighth Wonder Of The World’s” best chance to stay standing.

“This was the only plan that made any sense for re-purposing and keeping the dome,” Emmett said. “We have a Final Four coming (in 2015), we have a Super Bowl coming (in 2017) and we cannot have the Dome just sitting in its current state.I suspect Commissioner’s Court will make a decision fairly quickly.”

Along with hosting the Astros and the Houston Oilers the stadium, which opened in 1965, the Astrodome also hosted the rodeo for years as well as the famous “Battle of the Sexes” tennis match between Bobby Riggs and Billie Jean King.

The Dome has been closed since 2009, and since losing the Astros as a tenant in 1999, its most notable use was as a shelter in 2005 for Louisianans uprooted by Hurricane Katrina.

On Tuesday night, Harris County voters voted down a proposal that would’ve authorized for $217 million in public money to be used to convert the Astrodome into a convention center, which will likely lead to the demolition of the “Eighth Wonder of the World”.

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