Planning for a new Fayetteville ballpark has continued, with construction firm Barton Malow and architect Populous working to meet the city’s budget requirements.
Earlier this month, we noted that the two firms had made a round of changes that lowered the preliminary cost of the ballpark from $39 million to $34.7 million. Further reductions are needed, however, as Fayetteville has set a $33 million budget for the project.
That process continues, as the firms are still working to see what changes can be made to bring the project’s cost estimate down to its budget. The Fayetteville Observer has reported that, behind the scenes, both city officials and the Houston Astros–owners of the Buies Creek Astros (High A; Carolina League)–have expressed concerns about changes to the design that Barton Malow will recommend.
During a meeting on Monday, however, deputy city manager Kristoff Bauer said that none of the proposed changes have received final clearance. He also stressed that the process is still unfolding, and that officials on the city’s baseball committee will still have a chance to review any recommendations. More from The Fayetteville Observer:
“They gave some significant assurances today they would be in budget,” Bauer said.
In fact, Bauer said, the company would bring a list of those changes next week for the committee’s final approval.
The committee agreed to review the changes May 25.
Bauer said Barton Malow has begun contracting with local subcpntractors to get better cost estimates, and the company has reduced its own fees to the city.
“So, all of those changes we have been stressing for a number of weeks now are happening,” Bauer said. “And we fully expect we’ll be able to have a positive discussion next week about what changes are recommended.”
The Astros have reportedly sought to ensure that the facility’s final design incorporates amenities that are outlined in their lease with the city, including features on both the player development and fan experience sides. The Buies Creek Astros will spend the 2017 and 2018 seasons at Campbell University’s Jim Perry Stadium before moving into the new Fayetteville ballpark in 2019.
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