Three bids have been submitted for the design and construction of a new Wichita, KS ballpark, according to an announcement from the city. The new ballpark is being planned for the relocating New Orleans Baby Cakes (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League).
Discussions over a new Wichita ballpark continue, as the city aims to land its first affiliated Minor League Baseball team since the Wichita Wranglers (Class AA; Texas League) relocated to Northwest Arkansas after the 2007 season. The plans call for the demolition of Lawrence-Dumont Stadium, clearing the way for a new ballpark and surrounding development. A new ballpark would be part of a project that also features infrastructure improvements, including a pedestrian bridge that would cross the Arkansas River, as well as a National Baseball Congress museum.
The deadline to submit bids for design and construction was Wednesday, October 31, and the city says it received bids from three “highly reputable firms.” It will be left to local officials to review the bids, with interviews expected later this month. More from the Wichita Eagle:
The city of Wichita received three bids for the design and construction of the new multipurpose ballpark to replace Lawrence-Dumont Stadium, officials said in a release Thursday. The stadium will be the home field for a relocated minor league baseball team….
The three proposals will be reviewed by government officials, and the design-build teams will be interviewed later this month, the release said.
The city will spend as much as $81 million on the project. It includes the new ballpark, a National Baseball Congress museum and related infrastructure.
Earlier this week, a plan was unveiled for a mixed-use development, dubbed Riverfront Village, north of the new ballpark. While much of the vision for the development is still preliminary at this stage, Riverfront Village could include bars and restaurants, entertainment spots, retail, offices, and living space. It would be developed on seven acres.
The new ballpark is currently scheduled to open in 2020. A Class AA Southern League team is expected to move to New Orleans at the same time that the Pacific Coast League franchise relocates to Wichita. The move of a as-of-yet-unanounced Southern League team would come under the ownership of the current New Orleans ownership, led by Lou Schwechheimer, allowing the Baby Cakes moniker to live on in New Orleans while the Wichita club receives a name of its own.
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