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Thursday, June 30, 2022

St. Pete mayor reopens talks on future of Rays stadium site

Mayor Ken Welch said Wednesday that two previous proposals for the 86-acre downtown location are being scrapped, with a new round of plans to be solicited beginning in mid-August. Welch, St. Petersburg’s first Black mayor, has made a priority of including such things as affordable housing and greater job opportunities along with Rays baseball.

Welch said the goal is to choose a new redevelopment plan by year’s end. The Rays’ Tropicana Field lease is up in 2027 and Welch said the new plan should envision including a stadium at the site.

“I don’t believe waiting a few months to get this right is unreasonable,” the mayor said at a news conference near Tropicana Field. “I think St. Petersburg is the best opportunity for the Rays. It’s about making sure we’ve got the right plan for where we are in 2022.”

The Rays have played at the domed, tilted Tropicana Field since their inaugural 1998 season. The site is in the former Gas Plant neighborhood, where Black-owned businesses and homes were uprooted for the stadium’s original development and, before that, interstate highway construction. Welch said a goal is to restore some of that former neighborhood, where his father ran a wood yard business years ago.

“It’s about rebuilding a community that was there and was dispersed,” he said, holding an ax handle from his father’s business.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 30, 2022 at 03:14 PM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: rays

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   1. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 30, 2022 at 03:37 PM (#6084822)
I thought Tampa was the preferred site for a new Rays stadium, although many obstacles remained. Is the St. Petersburg proposal a real effort to build a new stadium in the Tropicana Field area, or just the first step in a post-Rays redevelopment of the former stadium neighborhood?
   2. Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc Posted: June 30, 2022 at 05:31 PM (#6084857)
I'd like to see the team play in a new stadium on the water -- the St. Lawrence River, that is.
   3. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 30, 2022 at 06:16 PM (#6084875)
Who has territorial rights to Ogdensburg?
   4. Brian C Posted: June 30, 2022 at 06:53 PM (#6084895)
Isn't a stadium on the current site precisely one of the things that the Rays are trying very desperately to avoid? I thought everyone hated that location, in addition to if not almost even superseding hatred for the actual Trop itself. This sounds like the St Pete mayor proposing a poison pill so he can say later, "Hey, I tried!"
   5. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: July 01, 2022 at 01:29 AM (#6084961)
I was in Tampa St Pete's for first time earlier this month. It really is in a very unattractive place for such a huge % of the market.
   6. Tom Goes to the Ballpark Posted: July 01, 2022 at 10:55 AM (#6085121)
The Trop lease was a huge impediment to a new stadium 10 years ago, but 2027 isn’t that far away now.
   7. Lassus Posted: July 01, 2022 at 11:02 AM (#6085123)
St. Petersburg FLORIDA? Is this the Onion?

EDIT: Oh wait, I was confusing it with St. Augustine. Whoops.

Official Museum of the St. Petersburg Rays can be the Salvador Dali Museum!

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