Oakland will take one last run at keeping the Athletics by paying $3.5 million on an attempt to persuade private investors to upgrade facilities at the Coliseum sports complex.
The city will pay $1.6 million to JRDV Architects, Forest City Enterprises and HKS Sports and Entertainment to determine the long-term feasibility of the complex, which includes O.co Coliseum, current home of the Oakland A’s, and Oracle Arena. In addition, the city will spend $1.9 million on a development plan for the site and additional acreage.
Oakland officials didn’t sound too optimistic about the prospects of keeping the A’s. For starters, owner Lew Wolff doesn’t want to be in Oakland and is actively seeking a new home in San Jose: no way he would pony up the private money for a new ballpark. And it’s doubtful other private investors would pay for a new ballpark, either.
“I hope everybody realizes that we have no money,” said Oakland council member Nancy Nadel. “As much as you might love the teams when you have no money, it’s a very different game.”
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