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Fayetteville Could Begin Ballpark Construction Next Summer

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Under a proposed timeline, Fayetteville will begin work on a new downtown ballpark in July 2017, allowing for a 2019 opening. 

Now that a memorandum of understanding has been reached with the Houston Astros and both the city and Cumberland County have discussed funding plans, the City of Fayetteville is planning the key steps in the process. It has been clear all along that 2019 is the target date for the opening of the proposed $33 million facility, but this revelation provides a glimpse in to what Fayetteville believes will need to be done to reach that date.

As it stands, Fayetteville is looking to have the ballpark turned over by the end of 2018, which would give the team’s operations plenty of time to set up shop before the regular season begins. However, the timeline requires additional steps for approval. More from the Fayetteville Observer:

The stadium timeline is subject to change, Kevin Arata, the city’s chief spokesman, said Friday. The city will need to obtain approval from the state’s Local Government Commission before issuing what are called “limited obligation bonds,” and a public hearing for such debt is required. The city hopes to have architectural design work finished by next spring, allowing the council to adopt the final resolution for the bond debt by May.

The stadium would be substantially complete by October 2018; the contractors would finish punch list items of minor work and turn the building over to the city by the December 2018, the timeline envisions.

The stadium would open the following April for baseball.

City officials plan to hire what they call a “construction manager of risk” or a firm that will ensure the project is on budget and on time.

The Observer’s story also addresses another key aspect of this scenario, which is where the team will play for the 2017 and 2018 seasons. Campbell University’s Jim Perry Stadium is confirmed to be an option, which is something that we discussed earlier this yearJ.P. Riddle Stadium–current home of the Fayetteville SwampDogs (summer collegiate; Coastal Plain League) and former MiLB facility–looks to have been been ruled out as a candidate.

The franchise will begin play next season as part of the High A level’s realignment between the Carolina and California leagues.

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