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More Details Released on PawSox Ballpark Cost

Pawsox Ballpark at Slater Mill rendering

Additional information shows that a new Pawtucket Red Sox (Class AAA; International League) ballpark could cost as much as $158 million, when accounting for principal and interest

Earlier this week, the PawSox and City of Pawtucket unveiled a proposed funding model that calls for the team to contribute $45 million, with the State of Rhode Island kicking in $23 million and the City of Pawtucket adding an additional $15 million. When accounting for property acquisition costs, the estimated total for the project rises to $83 million.

That total did not, however, include costs such as principal and interest on the 30-year bonds that are expected to be used for the project. The Providence Journal reports that the price tag for all three parties will rise when accounting for those costs, with the team’s contribution jumping to $86 million, the state’s to $43 million, and the city’s to $29 million.

The parties are expected to share in the responsibility of paying back bonds that, as proposed, would be issued by the Pawtucket Redevelopment Agency. State approval is required for the agency to issue those bonds, and the legislation needed for the proposal to move forward should will have to address how the public portion of the bonds will be guaranteed. More from the Providence Journal:

What remains unclear is how the public portion of the bonds would be guaranteed. Until the legislation is written, city spokesman Dylan Zelazo said, negotiators are still weighing whether city or state taxpayers, or some combination, would shoulder that responsibility if anticipated tax revenues fall short.

Eventually, all costs and details will be described in the proposed legislation that Pawtucket and the team hope state legislators will consider, Zelazo said. At the state’s request, the city has taken the lead in writing that legislation, which is expected to be completed “soon,” he said….

Regarding costs for the PawSox, Zelazo said, this is clear: “If they’re going to bond $33 million, they’re on the hook for not only the principal but also the interest.”

This has been a busy week for the proposal, as the funding model was introduced and the PawSox have launched an extensive ad campaign for the project. If approved, the ballpark would be constructed at the current site of an Apex department store and replace McCoy Stadium as the team’s home. The PawSox would sign a 30-year lease for the ballpark, ensuring that the team remains in Pawtucket through at least 2050.

Rendering courtesy Pawtucket Red Sox. 

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