What would you do if you had $600 million to spend?

Sorry, I’ll rephrase: What would you do if you had $600 million to spend on Camden Yards?

With the new lease with the Maryland Stadium Authority, the Orioles will have all that cash – their half of the $1.2 billion promised by former Gov. Larry Hogan – at their disposal.

The use of public funds for the construction and renovation of sports complexes is highly controversial. But the intent behind this project is admirable and the O’s appear inclined to buck the trend of small-market teams moving their downtown stadiums to the suburbs or leaving their cities entirely.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

A screengrab from an Orioles video shows Gov. Wes Moore, left, standing next to Orioles CEO John Angelos at Truist Park in Atlanta.
Maryland Gov. Wes Moore, left, and Orioles CEO John Angelos toured Truist Park in Atlanta and its environs before the start of this season. (Courtesy of Baltimore Orioles PR)

In March, Orioles chairman and CEO John Angelos and Gov. Wes Moore toured The Battery Atlanta, a 2-million-square-foot, mixed-use development outside Truist Park, for a very expensive brainstorming session. Angelos and Moore likely envision “Camden Yards 2.0″ as the hub of a similarly expansive sports complex, enclosed by restaurants, bars, stores and entertainment venues.

However, the Orioles have provided few clues as to how they will spend the money. Will they focus on improving the stadium and hope a successful team encourages growth from the surrounding area? Or will they expand construction outside the walls of Oriole Park?

Here are a few ways the O’s could spend their generous allotment of taxpayer money.

Small stuff

If the Orioles want to allocate funds to modernizing The Ballpark That Forever Changed Baseball, a few tweaks would go a long way to improving the game-day experience.

First, the muted, echoey sound system around the stadium should get an overhaul. Fans have long requested this change.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

The televisions mounted to the walls around the concourse are remarkably small, and the picnic tables on the first level are sparse. Perhaps this is purposeful: keep fans in their seats for as much of the game as possible. But it would behoove the Orioles to give fans more spots to stop and munch.

Speaking of picnic tables, the graveled area behind Legends Park in left-center field could use, to borrow the Orioles’ phrasing, a “reimagining.” This seems like a much more logical location for the Kids Corner than its current location, behind the seats on the first base side.

The scoreboards in center field look smaller and smaller with each passing season. Ideally, a high-definition replacement would fit snugly into the already-standing metal frame; best not to obstruct views of the warehouse or skyline.

While we’re at it, how about constructing a new neon sign in the now-vacant space above the scoreboard? Maybe something like this? Just a thought.

Wouldn't this look great? (Illustration by Paul Mancano; original photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

Big stuff

What kind of major changes could we see made to Camden Yards and its neighborhood?

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

The Orioles rarely sell tickets to the third deck above left field in an effort to reduce staff and conserve game-day resources. Why not remove the upper portions of sections 386 and 388 to build a restaurant and patio? Or even construct a bar inside the massive new wall below, featuring field-level views?

Diamond clubs — exclusive seating areas behind home plate — are all the rage these days, and it’s not hard to see why. They’re a way to attract high rollers and corporations eager to distance themselves from the masses and lounge in an air-conditioned environment. Adding one to Camden Yards would take a massive infrastructural upheaval and potentially ruin the egalitarian lower bowl, but the temptation might be too great.

One feature of The Battery Atlanta surely seems particularly attractive to Angelos: the 4,000-seat concert venue, which could provide a blueprint for Angelos to achieve his oft-stated goal of tying together live music and sports. Is there room for a similar venue within walking distance of Oriole Park?

Finally, something needs to be done with the brick building formerly known as Camden Station, which has been empty since the departures of Sports Legends Museum in 2015 and Geppi’s Entertainment Museum three years later. The historic and impressive building should be a destination, not an afterthought.

Angelos has the funds to bring his “live, work, play” vision for Camden Yards to life. Now we wait to see what it entails.