The El Paso City Council is expected to award the construction contract for a new Triple-A ballpark to Hunt Construction and local firm C.F. Jordan.
A $50-million ballpark in downtown El Paso is planned for the relocating Tucson Padres (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League), opening for the 2014 season. Populous has already handed the deal to design the ballpark, but the biggest contract for the ballpark — some $40.2 million — is the construction contract. This includes the demolition of City Hall (which could happen as soon as March) and the construction of the new facility.
In addition, the city council will decide whether to ask a state court to declare the ballpark project to be legal. Technically, this project isn’t a done deal; because bonds are involved, the Texas Attorney General’s office must sign off on the deal. A court declaration would preemptively address potential concerns at this level. From the El Paso Times:
A bond validation…would provide the city and the City of El Paso Downtown Development Corporation an “efficient procedure for confirming the validity of public securities and their associated contracts and obligations.” The local government corporation, approved by the council in December, was formed to act on behalf of the city. The corporation could then borrow money to pay for the ballpark at lower interest rates than the city could, lowering the overall cost of the ballpark. The corporation would have to issue bonds for the city to pay for the ballpark upfront, and would repay the debt with the voter-approved hotel tax, ballpark lease payments, parking fees, ticket surcharges and other revenues. Property taxes could not be used to pay for the ballpark.
Image courtesy city of El Paso.
RELATED STORIES: El Paso to set up corporation to oversee ballpark construction, management; Populous lands El Paso ballpark design contract; City, Diablos talking end of Cohen Stadium lease; Voters approve El Paso hotel/motel tax for new ballpark; El Paso ballpark debate enters final stretch; El Paso: ballpark will happen with or without hotel tax; El Paso: No federal issues at play in ballpark lawsuit; MountainStar Sports takes control of Tucson Padres; El Paso ballpark foes file suit in federal court to shut down project; MountainStar Sports buys Tucson Padres; Opponents: El Paso ballpark debate not over; Mayor won’t veto ballpark lease; PCL to El Paso in 2014; El Paso ballpark approval squeaks through; PCL approves move of T-Padres to El Paso — if lease approved; Rickey: El Paso could lose Triple-A team if ballpark not approved; MountainStar: Deal to bring Triple-A to El Paso could fall through if ballpark not approved; MountainStar, El Paso amend ballpark lease; El Paso mayor: I can still scuttle ballpark deal; Petition to halt El Paso ballpark submitted, but may be too late; El Paso moves forward with ballpark planning; El Paso group pledges profits to charity; Effort to thwart El Paso ballpark falls short; Protesters to “Occupy City Hall” over new El Paso ballpark; Hotel tax on El Paso ballot; no direct choice for voters; Will El Paso ballpark spur downtown development? Insiders of mixed mind; El Paso opponents: We want ballpark on fall ballot; PCL approves El Paso purchase of T-Padres; Foster: Opposition to new El Paso ballpark not a surprise; Opposition to El Paso ballpark emerges; Hoteliers: We don’t want to pay for new El Paso ballpark; El Paso group: we’re one step closer to buying PCL team; Pacific Coast League expected to decide El Paso bid for baseball this week; El Paso: Let’s sell Cohen Stadium to Tigua tribe; T-Padres back in Kino Stadium for 2013; One side effect of new El Paso ballpark: return of UTEP baseball; El Paso ownership group pitches PCL; El Paso approves ballpark for Triple-A team; First look: El Paso ballpark renderings; Diablos casualty of new El Paso ballpark; Downtown ballpark planning moving forward in El Paso; El Paso to debate ballpark bond issue; El Paso group seeking downtown ballpark, T-Pads; Moorad to Escondido: We need quick action on ballpark; Obstacles to new ballparks in California: not as bleak as expected; Escondido moving forward with business park on proposed ballpark property; City, not Moorad group, to acquire Escondido land; Escondido mayor: Time to scrap new-ballpark plan; Moorad: Leaving Padres in Tucson a possibility; Escondido ballpark vote put off indefinitely; Escondido ballpark vote delayed;State government could kill Escondido T-Pods ballpark; New for 2011: Tucson Padres; Escondido approves Triple-A ballpark — with reservations; Moorad group, Escondido sign MOU for new ballpark; Escondido council fills vacancy in advance of ballpark vote; Crunch time for new Escondido ballpark; Padres raise ante in Escondido ballpark negotiations; Escondido ballpark vote delayed again; new council will decide; Padres make it official: Beavers to Tucson in 2011; Election shows mixed support for new Escondido ballpark; Tuesday elections could determine fate of Bevos; Bevos to Tucson for 2011; Escondido ballpark vote delayed after pollution found at site; Fate of Bevos in the air until November, maybe December; Padres pitch one-sided lease to Escondido; Escondido: Show us some money, Padres; Escondido in, San Marcos out of Bevos ballpark mix
Share your news with the baseball community. Send it to us at email@example.com.
Are you a subscriber to the weekly Ballpark Digest newsletter? You can sign up for a free subscription at the Newsletter Signup Page.