By ALAN SNEL
The $1.9 billion Raiders stadium project has so many layers to it that it’s easy to forget another major sports venue construction project is about to start in the busy Las Vegas sports market.
Howard Hughes Properties Inc. is building a $150 million ballpark for its Las Vegas 51s baseball team next to the Vegas Golden Knights two-rink practice center and headquarters in Summerlin. Howard Hughes, which owns Summerlin and built Downtown Summerlin, is aiming to open this Las Vegas Ballpark for the 2019 Triple A baseball season.
LVSportsBiz.com took a close look at the ballpark site plan, and it’s clear the 51s’ new venue is literally next to the southern edge of the City National Arena, the $31 million Golden Knights home base. Take a look at how close the Golden Knights’ southern edge of its building is to the northern side of the 51s ballpark.
When you look at the site map, it appears as if Howard Hughes could have installed seats on top of the Golden Knights building facing the 51s ballpark for a nice view of the baseball field. LVSportsBiz.com walked the site in this video.
During a Nov. 8 zoning meeting, Clark County commissioners gave the green light to a use permit for Howard Hughes to start construction on the site that is across from Downtown Summerlin and very close to Red Rock Resort.
At $150 million, the cost of the Triple A ballpark is more than most minor league stadiums. Howard Hughes also won a stunningly high $80 million naming rights payment from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA). The venue will be called, “Las Vegas Ballpark” — not exactly the most creative name for the ball yard.
LVSportsBiz.com also read Howard Hughes ballpark application filed with Clark County (there are no written hard-paper documents to view at the county government center; they were already shredded by the county and you have to go online to read Howard Hughes’ paperwork for the ballpark project.)
Here are the major highlights. LVSportsBiz.com gives you five takeaways.
A dip in the pool anyone? An interesting amenity is that there will be a pool beyond the centerfield wall. That will be a good opportunity for Las Vegas area pool companies to buy a sponsorship deal for that ballpark amenity. The stadium will also “feature classic ballpark architecture,” according to the county commission agenda item from November.
A wider 360-degree concourse. The Summerlin ballpark concourse will be wider than the one at Cashman Field, where lines from the food and drink concession stands and areas choke the flow of walking traffic on the Cashman concourse when the crowd hits 5,000 or more fans. The Las Vegas Ballpark will have a 360-degree concourse, which will include access to a kids zone and berm areas common in new minor league baseball parks.
10,000 fan capacity and 22 suites. The new venue will also have 8,200 fixed seats, which will be a big improvement over the metal benches at Cashman. Las Vegas Ballpark will also have 22 suites and some open party areas, so capacity will be 10,000.
Available parking. The county commissioners gave a variance for Howard Hughes to build less parking spaces than required under county code. So, there will be 2,050 spaces on site. But the truth is Howard Hughes has a lot of available parking (at least 930 spaces) across S. Pavilion Center Drive in its Downtown Summerlin area, and fans can make an easy walk of five or ten minutes to reach the ballpark.
PENTA to build ballpark. LVSportsBiz.com broke the story in August that PENTA will build the ballpark. Union leader Tommy White of Laborers 872 said 872 workers will be working construction at the site. White noted Carpenters Local 1977 will be on the project, too. The stadium will host the 51s administrative office and can also serve as a place for other pro sports events, concerts and community events.
The New York Mets are leaving Las Vegas for a new Triple A host city in Syracuse for 2019. So, a new parent MLB team will have its Triple A affiliate at this new ballpark when it opens in 2019.
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