At a meeting on Friday, the Amarillo City Council will consider a contract with Western-Hunt that would allow construction of a new ballpark to begin.
Amarillo continues to plan a new downtown ballpark that is slated to open in 2019 for the relocating San Antonio Missions (Class AA; Texas League). Back in October, the council approved a construction manager at risk contract with Western-Hunt–a partnership between the Amarillo-based Western Builders and the Hunt Construction Group, a national firm. However, after concerns surfaced about agreeing on the ballpark’s construction price, the council allowed the city manager to weigh other procurement methods.
After negotiations, the result is the agreement with Western-Hunt that will be considered on Friday. Over the course of negotiations, Amarillo believes it was able to get the ballpark within its $45.5-million budget, including $40 million for the construction of the facility and $5.5 million for soft costs. More from The Amarillo Globe-News:
“Our hats are off to Western-Hunt for the work they did to bring this thing back into budget and deliver the full scope of the project,” said Jerry Danforth, the city’s director of facilities and capital projects.
Some non-essential aspects of the stadium, which is officially called a multi-purpose event venue, were scaled back to stay within budget, Miller said in an interview.
The city needed to keep the stadium construction price within $40 million to use the remainder of funds budgeted for the project – about $5.5 million – to cover “soft costs” like architect fees, furniture and a score board.
Shade structures, lighting and purely aesthetic features were targets for savings. In one example, Miller said masonry cladding on some of the columns on the front of the venue was left out of the final project to save $40,000 to $50,000.
The Missions’ move to Amarillo is part of a series of franchise shifts that the Elmore Sports Group is planning for 2019. The Double-A version of the Missions will be replaced in San Antonio by the Colorado Springs Sky Sox (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League), while the Helena Brewers (Rookie; Pioneer League) will relocate to Colorado Springs. The Amarillo ballpark project is still said to be on track for completion by April 2019.
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