Tampa Bay developer presents ballpark vision


View from beyond outfield, within greater footprint

Today’s the day that the Tampa Bay Rays and the City of St. Petersburg were scheduled to hear about a ballpark plan that is located within the city, yet is more convenient to Tampa and Clearwater. The site is in Carillon, a mixed commercial development at the foot of the Sunshine Skyway Howard Frankland Bridge. Because of Carillon’s proximity to Tampa and Clearwater (north of downtown St. Pete), nearly double the population is within a 30 minute drive of the ballpark site compared to Tropicana Field.

Carillon site within the Tampa Bay metro

Carillon is already largely built out, and the developer, CityScape, has only 17+ acres on which to build the ballpark. Since regional public transportation is severely limited, the ballpark will require a significant amount of existing or new parking to meet potential demand. To that end, _ has identified 14,000 parking spaces within the Carillon development. As we’ve seen with Fremont’s Pacific Commons, negotiating parking rights can be very tricky.

Fixed roof Carillon ballpark option

Five ballpark configurations were presented, two with a fixed roof, two with a retractable roof, and one that’s open air. The roof options have either a fixed or retractable outfield wall, the latter of which adds an estimated $8 million to the cost. Open air is the cheapest option at $424 million, whereas the retractable roof/wall version will cost an estimated $577 million.

Various options for outfitting the ballpark

Within those 13 acres is one of the more interesting ballpark concepts presented recently. Hotels and offices loom above and behind the upper deck. A large parklike area sits beyond the outfield, surrounded by more offices. If Rogers Centre (SkyDome) mated with Rangers Ballpark, the offspring might look something like this. At only 35,000 seats it would be the smallest ballpark in MLB, depending on Cisco Field’s final capacity.

Retractable roof option

The proposal is being pitched by a third party, not the City or the Rays, so there’s an extra element of complication if something like this were to be executed successfully. Both the team and developer will want to make the most money possible, yet there’s a $250 million funding gap – and that’s if St. Pete allows the Trop tax to fund Carillon. At the moment Carillon appears to be the only new ballpark option emerging from St. Pete and has some support from the mayor and some members of the city council. Will that be good enough for Stuart Sternberg, who has wanted to explore Tampa along as St. Pete? We’ll see.

15 thoughts on “Tampa Bay developer presents ballpark vision

  1. This ballpark would not be at the foot of the Skyway Bridge. Skyway connects the southern tip of St. Pete with Manatee County. The Howard Frankland Bridge connects Tampa and St. Pete.

  2. Pretty cool! I like the designs and really wish it’d come to fruition as the Rays & the Tampa community deserve better than what they have.


    A’s fan

  3. Well at least one of the designs is a non starter. The one with the see through panels on the roof would never get MLB approval after the Astrodome debacle 50 years ago. See through panels would be as equally ineffective today as they were back then both for allowing grass to grow (which seems to be a must these days as no artificial grass stadiums have been built since New Comiskey opened) and for allowing outfielders to see fly balls.

  4. I’ve always wondered what a ballpark situated in a faux-italian styled retirement community would look like.

  5. This ballpark looks like it came from the Shire.

  6. I still think that Coliseum City is a better idea for the A’s and Warriors to invest in. I do however feel that the city of Oakland gotta help pay for it to work too. San Jose to far and let’s not forget the Sf giants are in the playoffs too so let’s give Quan a chance. What u say guys???

  7. @ berry – a “chance” to do what, exactly?

  8. @Spartan
    Well my friend. What I mean by a “chance” is that the A’s have another year at the Coliseum and Quan’s emergency button (Coliseum City) should be presented to all the teams as early as spring 2013. It could be used as another stall tactic by the city get Selig and the Sf giants to say that ” Oakland is trying”
    How do u feel about this Spartan? The ny Yankees play in the Bronx…why can’t the A’s play in East Oakland? The Bronx makes Oakland look like walnut creek. U gotta go there to see it. To beileve it

  9. berry, you’re comparing apples to tree bark when trying to compare NY & Oakland. As for Quan convincing anyone, anything. Fat chance. She doesn’t need to convince anyone of anything, she actually has to get it done, including figuring out how to fund that mythical boondoggle and there’s zero chance of that.

  10. @berry, If your only basis for advocating Coliseum City is because “San Jose is [too] far” and “it could be used as another stall tactic by the city [to] get Selig and the Sf giants to say that [Oakland is trying]”, then I think your time would be better spent learning more about Howard Terminal and writing to Oakland politicians to encourage that they continue to look into that site (HT) and vouch its viability.
    There is no comparison between the Bronx and Oakland, speaking economically and population-wise.
    Obviously, your opinion has just as much right/basis as mine to be heard through these comments, but you should take time to read through ML & Jeffrey’s great contributions on this blog and educate yourself a little better when trying to make suggestions or rally support.

  11. @JGMJ,
    I’ve always wondered what a ballpark on the Vegas Strip would look like ;). Hope the Rays (or whoever) can pull this off.

  12. Thank u dirty and dmoas. I checked out some of the older posts on Howard terminal and 980 site. And ML and jeff did a good job on it. It will be really expensive and a lot of work done on the roads and trains. The only plus side is that the port gave it a thumbs up. Thanks for the heads up.

    Yes I am an Oakland supporter/fan whatever…and I have to confess…my gut feeling is that the city (the main Oakland decision makers) really don’t want to fund any of the stadiums or projects AT ALL. It will take an A’s world series (very realistic) and Raider playoffs..for them to be PRESSURED into any action. So in that case if San Jose can get past there hurdels, then yes San Jose is fine with me.

    Thank u dirty for the heads up.
    And I hate the devil rays…. In my opinion they should move to Orlando…better city even tho dwight Howard gone

  13. Everyone tries to compare oakland to the bronx as a reason why the a’s shouldn’t try to leave, yet ignores that for the better part of a decade the Yankees were trying to get out of the Bronx and into the west side of manhattan. Also even though the south bronx is a bit hood, it has a neighborhood and bar/restuarant culture around the stadium that is absent from the col. Also every neighborhood in NYC with a subway stop is rapidly becoming a trendy place to live and eventually that will happen to the bronx as well.

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