Inmates Fixing Crumbling GABP Seats

Great American Ball Park opened just 11 years ago at a cost of $290 million (taxpayer-funded). Already the seats are falling apart – and the county is turning to jail labor to fix it:

Faced with costs as high as $5 million, desperate county officials ended up turning the job of replacing 39,000 seats into a massive do-it-yourself project. They hired a local firm to design new molds for the seats, found a plastics company to make the seat backs and bottoms, and are paying former jail inmates and others about $10 an hour to install them.

About 17,000 of the new seats already are in place, and county officials say they’re stronger, better looking, more durable and less expensive than the originals.

“We think we have not only a better product, it meets all specifications,” said Joe Feldkamp, who oversees the stadiums for the county. “We’re in the seat business now.”

The Cincinnati Enquirer notes seats should last up to 25 years. County officials – and the manufacturer – have no idea why the seats started failing as early as 2008.

Meanwhile, they’ll be auctioning off the old crappy seats:

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