If you are a San Francisco resident you know that the Oakland Athletics are a big deal; maybe your social or business contacts are Oakland A’s fans. The A’s are one of the best teams in the MLB, and have been for a long time. Many of us also know that the team has been planning to move to a third city in the Bay Area for a while now. The city of San Jose has been trying to get a new stadium for the A’s to replace their current park, and they have been making progress. For the past few months, the A’s have been meeting with the San Jose city officials in hopes to get a deal worked out to keep the team in San Jose.
The Oakland Athletics have been in talks with both the city of Oakland and Alameda County about a new stadium. The county has offered up a site for the Athletics to build their new home, but the team has been hesitant to move from Oakland. The A’s have been willing to trade the Coliseum, which would be a $145 million replacement, to the city, where they could move into a new facility that would be partially financed by the city and partially by the A’s.
As the Oakland Athletics continue their pursuit of a new home for the team, it appears that they will be staying put in the Oakland Alameda Coliseum. After conducting a feasibility study of Las Vegas, the team is now considering a move to an existing facility in Oakland, according to reports from the San Jose Mercury News . This would allow the team to pursue a long-term lease for Alameda County’s O.co Coliseum, which could make a move to Las Vegas more difficult.
On Wednesday morning, Oakland Athletics president Dave Kaval stood on the south side of the Las Vegas Strip, with the Cosmopolitan and Planet Hollywood in view. Over the next two days, Kaval and his architect will be in attendance at a series of meetings and evaluating the potential location of a new stadium, he added. Meanwhile, talks with the city of Oakland for a 35,000-seat waterfront stadium at the Howard Terminal site are at the “bottom of the ninth inning,” according to Kaval.
Officials from the Oakland City Council approved a non-binding term sheet for the ballpark and its surrounding development on Tuesday, a project that may cost up to $12 billion. However, Kaval objected because the city approved a term sheet that varied from the one presented by the A’s three months before and contained changes that the team had never seen before. Following that, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred issued a statement expressing displeasure with the result and pledging to “immediately initiate discussions with the A’s to plan a way ahead for the Club.”
So, what precisely does it imply?
In a phone interview with ESPN, Kaval stated, “I believe we need to dissect what was passed and what it means.” “The fact that the city council did not vote on our request — I mean, that’s uncommon. We are grateful for some of the compromises made. I believe the parties were talking in good faith to find a solution that was acceptable to both parties. Obviously, we didn’t arrive in time for the voting. As a result, we must strike a balance between development and the harsh reality of ‘How do we take this project into an implementation phase?’ We can’t allow the process to become the final result.”
In April, the A’s announced that they would privately fund the ballpark, which is expected to cost $1 billion, while also providing $450 million in community benefits and arranging for an additional $11 billion in private investment to eventually build out the surrounding neighborhood with 3,000 residential units, up to 1.5 million square feet of commercial space, and 270,000 square feet of retail space.
The city responded with a plan that includes three key differences: a new financial structure that relies on only one infrastructure financing district, rejecting the A’s request to create another at Jack London Square; a 35 percent increase in affordable housing demands; and an additional community benefits fund that isn’t solely dedicated to capital investments.
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf and other community leaders hosted a news conference near the Howard Terminal site on Wednesday morning in which they touted the city’s proposal and urged the A’s to continue negotiating. Schaaf said she’s noticing an “openness” from the A’s, adding that the city “provided the primary things that they asked for, that they have said they need to keep going on this process.”
“I appreciate their efforts to keep the heat on,” Schaaf added, “and what better place to go for heat than Vegas.”
The Vegas visits, on the other hand, were presented as due diligence to cover for a proposal that may not materialize and offer a parallel route for a team playing in an out-of-date building, according to Kaval. Kaval wants additional details on how the A’s would be compensated for a $352 million infrastructure contribution, as well as when environmental clearances will be granted and when a final binding vote will take place, preferably before the conclusion of the current baseball season.
Oakland city officials view their Friday counterproposal, as well as the Tuesday changes, as the logical progression of a discussion.
Officials at A see it as a completely new arrangement.
“We need to know what passed and how it connects to our initial plan,” Kaval said. “To obtain a definite vote, we need to grasp the timeframe. We also need to engage closely with the league, since they have a strong opinion on the subject. They want to make sure the A’s have a place to call home. We’re on the verge of running out of time. We’re under a lot of stress since our present facility has outlived its usefulness by ten years. Not to mention the fact that moving sideways is no longer an option.”
The A’s have been looking for a new stadium in the Bay Area for the better part of two decades, visiting San Jose, Fremont, and various locations in Oakland, most notably near Laney College. Renovations to the existing Coliseum site, where the A’s have played since 1968, were ruled out due to the team’s expressed desire for a downtown location.
Before last week’s All-Star Game, Manfred said it would be a “mistake” to label the Las Vegas option a bluff, instead describing it as “a realistic possibility for a big league team.” If the team’s agreement with the city falls through, other cities such as Portland, Oregon, Nashville, Tennessee, Charlotte, North Carolina, Vancouver, British Columbia, and Montreal may be considered.
That isn’t necessarily true right now.
“We’re concentrating on two parallel paths: Oakland and southern Nevada,” Kaval said. “That’s the league’s direction, and that’ll be our emphasis until they give us something else to do.”
This article broadly covered the following related topics:
- oakland athletics new stadium
- oakland athletics stadium
- oakland athletics roster
- oakland athletics latest rumors
- oakland athletics fan