Washoe Commission Approves Stadium Design Contract

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Washoe County commissioners have approved $2.6 million dollars in financing to hire an architect to design a minor league baseball stadium at the Sparks Marina.

Plans call for the stadium, to be designed by HOK Architects, to be built in time for the 2006 baseball season.

Construction costs, estimated at $26 million, are to be paid by a 2 percent tax on car rentals charged to tourists.

A group called Sierra Nevada Baseball is trying to buy a Triple A Pacific Coast League team and bring it northern Nevada.

Managing partner Phil Zive said negotiations are ongoing with two different teams, and League President Branch B. Rickey has promised to provide a team.

Zive said a team should be announced by the end of September, after this year's baseball season.

He said commitments have been made for 30 skyboxes and for half of the 400 stadium club seats.

The architect contract says the stadium will have 8,000 seats and overflow seating in the grass for a total of 10,000 spectators.