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Investor proposes site for downtown Montreal ballpark

Montreal ExposDeveloper Luc Poirier has won the rights to purchase the former Montreal Children’s Hospital site in downtown Montreal and says the site would be the perfect place for a new Montreal MLB ballpark.

The site, at René-Lévesque Boulevard and Atwater Street, is on the western edge of downtown Montreal, also near the former Montreal Forum location. While Poirier, known for being a high-profile real-estate investor in Montreal, says there are many potential uses for the site, one prime use is as a new ballpark for a relocating or expansion Major League Baseball team. And he’s taking his argument to a as-yet-unrevealed major player in MLB circles, per the CBC:

“I have a meeting scheduled in the next week with one of the biggest major league baseball persons,” he said.

“I have only one [person], but a big one. A big, big one.”

The buildings comprising the former Montreal Children’s Hospital are still standing, but it doesn’t seem likely they will survive: they’re really not suited to a reuse for something like downtown condos, for example. But it’s a site that’s large enough for an urban MLB ballpark: at 10.3 acres (190 meters by 220 meters, to be precise), it would have a larger footprint than Target Field and Wrigley Field and about the same footprint as Fenway Park.

Now, whether this is a realistic goal remains to be seen: it will take over a billion dollars, give or take, to make a Montreal an MLB market again, between a potential acquisition price or expansion fee and ballpark construction. While there’s certainly sentiment in Montreal for a return of Major League Baseball, nothing is imminent, as chatter about new ballparks in Oakland and Tampa Bay has tailed off in recent months.

MORE: Apparently the city isn’t thrilled with the idea of using the site for a new downtown ballpark, but it’s pretty clear Richard Bergeron, the mayor’s point man on downtown strategy, has no idea how much land is needed to build an MLB ballpark. However, Bergeron did put forth an interesting alternative: land currently used as parking for the CBC in downtown Montreal.

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