Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

St. Petersburg City Council says developer can pitch Tampa Bay Rays stadium plan

The St. Petersburg City Council passed a resolution Thursday night that will allow a prominent real estate developer to pitch a plan for a new baseball stadium.

Darryl LeClair, head of CityScape, sent a letter last week to Mayor Bill Foster asking for an audience to pitch a new baseball stadium in the Carillon business park. He also asked for assurance that the city would not view the pitch as meddling into the stalemate between the city and Tampa Bay Rays over a new stadium.

The resolution invited CityScape to present its plan to the council, but it barred the company from discussing a new plan directly with the Rays — unless the team signs an amendment to its current use agreement with the city.

For now, prohibiting LeClair from dealing with the Rays is somewhat moot in that the Rays have said they have no interest in meeting with the developer, or anyone else with a Pinellas stadium proposal, unless the city also lets them explore stadium possibilities all over the Tampa Bay area.

City attorney John C. Wolfe told the council that if it permitted the team to deal directly with CityScape, that might allow the Rays to claim that the council had waived its exclusivity agreement, which currently restricts the team from dealing with any entity other than the city.

That allowance, Wolfe said, would open the door for the Rays to leave the region, which he said he believes is the organization's ultimate goal.

Principal owner Stuart Sternberg has said repeatedly he does not intend to move the Rays out of the region but has left the door open to the possibility of selling the team to someone who might. A Rays spokesman on Thursday declined to comment.

The proposed amendment would let the Rays negotiate with any developers who want to build a stadium in St. Petersburg. The council would still have to approve the prospective developers and would maintain veto power over any deals.

Council Chair Leslie Curran, the only dissenting vote, questioned what kind of precedent the resolution would set for other developers interested in proposing new stadium ideas.

Other proposals, Wolfe said, would be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Several council members said the proposed amendment could clarify the Rays' real intentions.

"We'll learn very quickly," Dudley said, "if our partners are interested in a St. Pete solution."

St. Petersburg City Council says developer can pitch Tampa Bay Rays stadium plan 08/16/12 [Last modified: Thursday, August 16, 2012 10:53pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. North Korean missile launch may be testing rivals, not technology

    World

    SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea's latest missile test Monday may have less to do with perfecting its weapons technology than with showing U.S. and South Korean forces in the region that it can strike them at will.

    A woman watches a TV screen showing a file footage of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, at Seoul Train Station in Seoul, South Korea, Monday,. North Korea fired a short-range ballistic missile that landed in Japan's maritime economic zone Monday, officials said, the latest in a string of test launches as the North seeks to build nuclear-tipped ICBMs that can reach the U.S. mainland. [AP Photo/Lee Jin-man]
  2. PolitiFact: Fact-checking Samantha Bee on Florida felonies

    State Roundup

    Comedian Samantha Bee traveled to Florida, where she says "retirees and democracy go to die," to shed light on how the state makes it difficult for felons to regain the right to vote.

    Samantha Bee hosts Full Frontal with Samantha Bee on TBS. Bee portrayed some of Florida’s felonies as not so serious on her show.
  3. For some, Memorial Day comes around more than just once a year

    Military

    ST. PETERSBURG — It is shortly before nine on a Friday morning, and the heat is already approaching unbearable levels at Bay Pines National Cemetery.

    Iles carefully digs up the St. Augustine grass so that it will continue to grow when it is placed back on the gravesite. He tries not to disturb the root base.
  4. State budget uncertainty has school districts 'very concerned'

    K12

    While waiting for Gov. Rick Scott to approve or veto the Legislature's education budget, the people in charge of school district checkbooks are trying hard to find a bottom line.

    It has not been easy.

    The unsettled nature of Florida’s education budget has left school districts with questions about how they will make ends meet next year. [iStockphoto.com]
  5. Ernest Hooper: Removing Confederate symbols doesn't eliminate persistent mindset

    Human Interest

    The debate has begun about removing a Confederate statue from outside the Hillsborough County Courthouse, and its removal is long overdue.

    Robert E. Lee Elementary, 305 E. Columbus Drive in Tampa, originally opened its doors in the early 1910s as the Michigan Avenue Grammar School. [Times file]