Atlanta to demolish Turner Field after Braves leave in 2017
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said Tuesday that the city will move forward with the demolition of Turner Field after the Braves leave for the suburbs in 2017.
The team had announced a day earlier that it will move to a new $672 million stadium that seats 42,000, one that is located approximately 10 miles from the downtown area of the suburbs in Cobb County.
The move is reportedly being made possible in part by $450 million in public support in Cobb County, something Reed said the city of Atlanta couldn't afford to match, even though the team called reports of the $450 million figure "erroneous."
According to Christina A. Cassidy of the Associated Press, Reed said at a press conference on Tuesday that the stadium will not be left vacant when the Braves play on a new field in Cobb County in three years. The destruction of "The Ted," named after billionaire media mogul and philanthropist Ted Turner, will usher in an expansive middle-class development.
Reed admitted that the city was unable to keep the field from being demolished, adding that it would require the city to take on $150 million to $250 million in debt in order to make the kinds of improvements the Braves wanted at the stadium.
A contract has yet to be signed for the move to the new stadium, but Braves executive vice president Mike Plant said he's "100 percent certain it will happen."
Turner Field hosted the 1999 World Series, 2000 All-Star game and four National League championship series. It had initially opened as the 85,000-seat main stadium for the 1996 Olympics.SI WIRE: Report: Joe Nathan, Tigers have ‘mutual interest’