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Taking Down the Igloo

You like fireworks. I like watching big arenas and stadia be imploded. But when they can’t be imploded and instead are dismantled piece by piece, what to do? Someone — YouTube user DAYGraphics2012 — took time-lapse video of the dismantling of the old Pittsburgh Civic Arena, vintage 1961, later known as Mellon Arena, better known as The Igloo, where Mario Lemieux once ruled, and the demise of the building over nine months, depicted in a matter of a half-minute, is mesmerizing. Ashes to ashes:

Very cool. ‘Course, it didn’t hit home for me like this one from 2004, the end of Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia:

Oh, hell, why not, here’s ten of ’em, the Kingdome (Seattle), the Omni (Atlanta), the Hoosier Dome/RCA Dome (Indianapolis), Riverfront Stadium/Cinergi Field (Cincinnati), Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium (take a guess), Three Rivers Stadium (Pittsburgh), the Vet again, Market Square Arena (Indianapolis again), the ancient St. Louis Arena, and Texas Stadium in fabulous Irving, Texas:



HT: Gillian Jacobs, Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy.

It’s Official: A Massive Shark (Probably) Ate The Missing Great White

It’s Official: A Massive Shark (Probably) Ate The Missing Great White



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  1. Fnordish says:

    The best part was when the buildings fell down!

  2. Jake says:

    Ahh, thanks. I was like huh? But now I totally get it.

  3. @Jake: Gillian is a Pittsburgher and her tweet about this drew my attention to the video, hence the hat tip.

  4. Jake says:

    Okay I’m a little confused, what does this have to do with Gillian Jacobs, whose name is on the bottom?

  5. Brandon says:

    I actually went to the Texas Stadium implosion which was at the very end of the last video.

  6. @manjiscud Can’t argue in favor of public funds for sports palaces, since I’ve argued against that for years — I, too, subscribe to the you-want-it-you-pay-for-it idea, although that’s not how it works anymore, not without substantial public infrastructure funding and the ever-popular hotel and rental car tax. But this is about the demolition of a building, not a new one. And it was built — publicly funded, to be sure, hence the “Civic” name — in 1961 without a pro team tenant and without much hope of getting one, because the city had no venue to attract not just sports but convention and concert business (the retractable roof, unique in its day, was intended for open-air symphony concerts). (There was a secondary, low-rent pro tenant briefly in the early days, the Rens in the old ABL, which folded) The Penguins came along in 1967, as did an ABA team which didn’t last until the end of the league.

    This one’s all about things going boom. It’s July 4th. Try to enjoy the explosions. And, well, I like sports, so, that. To each his or her own.

  7. BobbyFJtown says:

    So sad to see The Igloo go, but Consol is such a nice arena. Many memories for people in the Pittsburgh Area. Thanks for sharing!

  8. manjiscud says:

    What a bummer. Real estate that could be used to house those of us that cannot afford housing so that billionaires can host games that millionaires play while the average citizen has to pay about the nose to watch. All done with a tax incentive for the billionaires to build the stadium in the first place. Sorry to be a wet noodle but this is the Nerdist not the Billionairest. And by the way FUCK Sports.

  9. Bryan says:

    I wish they didn’t tear it down. Went to a lot of games and concerts in there.

  10. Charlie says:

    What a bummer. The Civic Arena’s always been one of those distinct landmarks for us Pittsburghers.