Originally Posted by LITTLE NELL
I don't get the 1980s reference, I do know that when I was growing up in the 50s the city had 3.6 million people, it's now around 2.7. Are all those people coming back? Chicago is now number 3 in the USA and before long the Dallas and Houston areas will have more people.
When we visit up there we stay with my sister in Arlington Heights and I know it's a lot easier to get to somewhere like Addison or Elmhurst than to 35th and Shields.
I believe you live in the city so you are not going to agree with any talk about suburbia being a better location for the Sox, but based on how the Sox have performed at the box office at USCF since they moved in I believe they would have done better out west. We will never know for sure but if you were to pin down JR, he would say the same thing. The Sox didn't pull Addison out of a hat and say let's go there, they did extensive demographic studies and came up with Addison.
I see absolutely no reason to think that this is true. As you said, you can't prove the negative, whether or not the Sox would have drawn any better at the gate if they were in Addison (everything else being equal). Sure, your sister in Arlington Heights might have an easier time getting to games. But, lots of those families originally from the south side moved to southern suburbs. It wouldn't be any easier to get to Addison from Oak Lawn than it is to get to Bridgeport from Oak Lawn.
Those demographic studies would have been done in 1986. The city has changed drastically since then, with lots of gentrification and people (read: money) moving back to the city. As the economic and housing crisis has, arguably, hurt suburbia and exurbia moreso than the city itself, I suspect that a suburban ballpark would also be worse off in these last few years than an urban park. Those demographic shifts from city to suburbia/exurbia in the last few decades are not unique to the Chicagoland area. Despite that, there has been a movement in new ballpark construction from suburb to city, not the other way around. I think there is a good reason behind that.