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Fayetteville Lease Could be Finalized in December

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A lease for a new downtown Fayetteville ballpark for a Houston Astros-owned franchise could be reviewed in December, according to Fayetteville officials. 

Previous reports indicated that negotiations between Fayetteville and the Astros–who would place a High-A Carolina League team at the ballpark–were progressing to the point where a preliminary agreement could be made public this month. While officials say that talks are still moving forward, the lease will likely not receive a public review until December.

At one point, it was believed that the lease could be reviewed on Monday. However, Fayetteville officials say that they need more time to work out some key details. More from the Fayetteville Observer:

Although Mayor Nat Robertson had hoped the 30-year lease would be ready Monday for the council to adopt it with fanfare, the timetable has been pushed to December.

Mayor Pro Tem Mitch Colvin, who heads the city’s baseball committee, said city officials, their consultant Jason Freier and the Astros executives were reviewing final drafts of a lease that has been under negotiation since August. He described the delay on adopting it as minor.

“It’s just a matter of reconciling some differences and making sure they are consistent with state law,” Colvin said.

A public hearing on the ballpark will still take place on Monday. If the plan moves forward as expected, ballpark construction will begin next summer, allowing the facility to be ready in time for the 2019 season.

In the meantime, the Astros are placing the franchise at Campbell University’s Jim Perry Stadium, where it will play as the Buies Creek Astros for the 2017 and 2018 seasons.

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