$65M New Nashville Ballpark Breaks Ground

New Nashville Ballpark, the future home of the Nashville Sounds minor league baseball team, has officially broken ground.

Groundbreaking Ceremony at New Nashville Ballpark

New Nashville Ballpark, the future home of the Nashville Sounds minor league baseball team, has officially broken ground.  The new stadium, which is expected to open in spring 2015, will rise on the site of the original Nashville Stadium, known as Sulphur Dell, which opened in 1870 and operated until 1963. The stadium will replace the Sounds’ current home, the Herschel Greer Stadium.

According to The Tennessean, the New Nashville Ballpark will feature 8,500 seats and hold a total of 10,000 fans. The development of the new ballpark will be funded by $65 million in bond revenue released by Metro Nashville to cover the $37 million in construction costs, $5 million of capitalized interest during construction and $23 million in land acquisition costs, comprised of $18 million payment towards the state for a new 1,000-acre parking facility and a $5 million payment towards the state for an underground parking garage planned nearby.

As a result of footing the bill for the development, Metro Nashville will own the ballpark and lease it to the Sounds, on 30-year terms at a cost of $700,000 per year, which will go towards repaying financing debt. Further sources of debt repayment will come from an estimated yearly 650,000 in sales tax revenue generated by the stadium, $520,000 in tax-increment financing, $345,000 from Metro Nashville’s yearly operating budget, as well as funds from Metro Nashville’s current operating agreement with the Sounds for Herschel Greer Stadium. Rounding of the necessary yearly $4.3 million in debt repayment will be $675,000 of property taxes paid by a $37 million, 250-unit residential project by San Antonio-based Embrey Development Corp. set to rise near the stadium’s home plate. A further $750,000 in property taxes will come from a $50 million mixed-use retail development planned by the Sounds ownership near the new stadium.

Early rendering for New Nashville Ballpark

Design is being handled by local firm Gobell Hays and national firm Populous, reported the Nashville Post. According to The Tennessean, Bell & Associates Construction was selected for the construction contract.

Advertised as a $152 million public private partnership, the project is expected to be an economic shot in the arm for North Nashville, the area north of downtown, which has seen little activity in the past years.

Images courtesy of Nashville Sounds via Facebook