The Cologne Cardinals are playing at their current facility for more than thirty years. Besides some complaints about noise, which have been debunked thanks to measurements, there never was a problem. Now all of a sudden, the City of Cologne is forcing the club to downsize because of the aforementioned noise complaints.
With twelve teams, two ladies, five youth, one mixed and four men teams, the club is one of the biggest baseball clubs in Germany. It has a team in the first German Bundesliga, the highest level of baseball in the country. The club is focusing on the development of players as it doesn’t have the resources as clubs like the Heidenheim Heideköpfe or the Regensburg Legionäre, who can acquire players from outside due to big sponsors.
Despite the results of the measurements because of the noise complaints, which proved that the “noise” never exceeded the standards, the City of Cologne is putting more pressure on the club. This year, a new rental “agreement” has been composed by the Cologne Sporting Facilities Authority, which is based on a construction permit of 2001, that was unknown to the club and the city.
The Cardinals could not have a look at this rental agreement for a long time. But this agreement would mean that the club has to downsize. Besides this, the new agreement dictates operating hours of the facility for training purposes between 18:00 (6 PM) and 20:30 (9:30 PM). Through the decades, the club has always announced the operating hours to the City of Cologne. There was never a problem and now, all of a sudden, the club is forced to adapt them.
The chairman of the Cologne Cardinals can only guess for the reasons. In private, the club has been told that it is not about them but merely about the number of events that are taking place at the Müngersdorf Sports Facility, where the baseball diamond of the Cardinals is located. The chairman stated: “Of course we are a part of the Müngersdorf Sports Facility but we cannot dissolve the club just to please a few neighbors.
It is rather strange that the City of Cologne doesn’t impose any restrictions to the adjacent soccer club. Luckily for the Cardinals, the local citizens association is supporting the club.
The Sports Authority of the City of Cologne has sent an ultimatum to the Cardinals. They have given the club until July 31st to sign the new rental dictation. If the club doesn’t sign, there is a possibility the club will not be able to use its facility. This would mean that about 250 members do not have a place to practice their beloved sport. Instead of helping a club that is living up to the noise standards, the City of Cologne is making their life harder.
In an attempt to convince the City of Cologne of its wrongdoing, the Cologne Cardinals have started a petition. Please support the club and sign the petition.