Metro Nashville officials are touting plans for a new ballpark near downtown they hope will be up for approval by the end of the year. They say it’s a way to fill in empty space and tie together several up-and-coming areas, although neighbors have a few concerns.
The ten-thousand-seat ballpark would go on some vacant land owned by the state, not far from the capitol and the downtown farmer’s market. It’s the historic site of Sulphur Dell, the old ballpark graced by legends like Babe Ruth.
Nashville’s mayor has said if a new stadium is going to happen, it will happen there. His right-hand man, Rich Riebeling, is optimistic about closing a deal for the land soon.
“We’ve got a lot of work to do. Nothing’s done. But over the next few weeks we hope to finalize our agreement with the state. And we hope to present things to the City Council and the Sports Authority hopefully before the end of the year.”
Riebeling helped outline the plans (PDF here) at a meeting attended by about two hundred, among them the mascot for the city’s minor-league team, the Sounds. The team is expected to help pay for construction, which could cost more than $40 million.
The plan includes a one-thousand-car garage. Traffic and parking were chief among the neighbors’ concerns at the meeting, alongside lightning and noise.