Lew Wolff and crew will scrap ballpark village, use private financing to build new ballpark closer to mass transit.
The Oakland A’s confirmed the rumors: they will scrap the idea of using the proceeds of a ballpark-village to fund a new ballpark, and will instead plan on a privately financed facility closer to mass transit.
Even in the best of times the concept behind Cisco Field was iffy: using the proceeds of a mixed-use development to fund a ballpark is still an untried concept on the major-league level, and the A’s were planning on locating ballpark far away from mass transit at a time when BART is massively expanding in the East Bay area. With the credit markets still tight and housing demand in the tank, the plan now makes even less sense.
So give the A’s some credit for deciding to adjust to challenging times. A 38-acre lot next to the still-unbuilt Warm Springs BART station and I-880 makes a certain amount of sense: the team can draw fans from Santa Clara, San Jose and Oakland with the combination of mass transit and location.
This doesn’t mean the new ballpark is a sure thing. The current project cost is $400 million, and the A’s say they’ll use the proceeds of the naming-rights deal with Cisco, available cash and borrowing against future concession sales to finance the ballpark. We’ll see how all three line items break down.
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