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Wednesday, Jul 30th

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Columbia to study ballpark sites, feasibility

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Minor League Baseball

The Columbia (S.C.) City Council decided to spend $47,000 on a ballpark feasibility study for a Class A Sally League team instead of leaving it up to the local Chamber of Commerce.

The reason for spending city money was simple: the feeling was that a study from Brailsford & Dunlavey would be more credible if the city had paid for it, rather than the chamber, which has been involved in bringing Minor League Baseball back to Columbia. There is a ballpark plan of sorts on the table -- Greenville’s Hughes Development Corp. has pitched a new ballpark as part of a larger Bull Street development --but the contract doesn't focus on a specific location. (We'll be interested to see if the current Capital City Stadium site is addressed.) From The State:

City staffers had been in talks with Brailsford & Dunlavey, based in Detroit, for an analysis that the chamber offered to finance. Chamber leaders have been in the forefront of advocates for the city to sign a deal with the Hughes company and for a baseball stadium to be built there.

Earlier this year, the chamber paid for an economic impact analysis that projects 11,000 permanent jobs and $1.2 billion in spinoff effects once the neighborhood is built in about 20 years.

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