Council Approves Baseball Agreement

The Reno City Council approved an agreement with Nevada Land, LLC Wednesday, to plan to construct a Ballpark District along the Truckee River in downtown Reno.

The Baseball District would cover an area immediately east of Lake Street, from the ReTRAC project on the north to the Truckee River on the south. The district would include not only a 10,000 capacity baseball stadium for a AAA baseball program, but also new residential, restaurant and retail components, and would incorporate the historic Freighthouse structure at the railroad tracks.

If the agreement goes forward as proposed, the Fire Station at the corner of Evans and Second Street would be relocated to make room for residential and/or retail uses. That building is currently not only a Fire Station, but it also houses Fire Department administration staff and staff from other City departments. Temporary locations for these functions are now being explored, in order to allow for an expedited construction schedule if the final agreement is approved. Construction is proposed to begin in early 2008, with the stadium to open for the 2009 baseball season.

The total start-up cost for the project is estimated to be $81 million, including the cost to relocate the fire station. Of this, $27 million is proposed to come from the rental car tax. The Reno Redevelopment Agency plans to dedicate annual reimbursements over 20 years to the project, amounting to an approximate net present value of $18 million. These funds will come from the property taxes generated by the baseball district.

Staff will now work with the developer to create a detailed development agreement, which will come back to the Reno City Council on September 12, acting in their role as the Reno Redevelopment Agency Board.