St. Louis working on plan to keep Cardinals

Once the Missouri Legislature decided funding for a new Cardinals stadium and adjoining residential and commercial complex was out of the question, fans and supporters became fearful that the Redbirds would fly the coop, ending up well outside the boundaries of downtown St. Louis.

Now it seems there is a chance the team could stay without the state's support but with financial assistance from St. Louis. Under the new plan, Ballpark Village, the condos and businesses that were part of the original stadium plan, is less of a factor.

State leaders wanted the village to generate sales tax to help pay back the taxpayer dollars spent on the project. At this point, the shopping and living areas would be nice, but certainly not a necessity. The focus should be on keeping the Cardinals in downtown St. Louis.

Although they say they aren't in negotiations with the team, Illinois leaders are almost salivating at the thought of a stadium on the Mississippi River's eastern shore. A stadium there would have downtown St. Louis as a backdrop.

That certainly sounds attractive until one considers what could happen to downtown St. Louis should the Cardinals leave. Other businesses no doubt would follow suit. Further declines in the downtown area would be bad for St. Louis and all of Missouri.