Rhode Island Looking For Money For Pawsox
The owners of the Boston Red Sox need at least $23 million from Pawtucket and Rhode Island taxpayers to build a replica of Fenway Park for the franchise’s Triple A minor league team in the city. The stadium would cost about $83 million with $45 million coming from the Red Sox owners and the rest from state and city bonds which allegedly would be paid off by the Red Sox owners from stadium revenues. Rhode Island has other needs though. In October, 2016, 24/7 Wall Street rated Rhode Island as having the worst roads in the country. But priorities are priorities and a stadium for a minor league team is a priority especially since Worcester, Massachusetts wants the team. Worcester apparently has a stadium plan ready to go. Rhode Island elected officials have set up six public hearings to find out if taxpayers want to foot part of the bill for a replica Fenway Park. Apparently Red Sox ownership still likes Rhode Island but sports owners are not able to walk away from a chance to pit one city against another in the stadium game.
Red Sox ownership has still a long-term contract to use the city owned stadium. The Pawtucket Red Sox play in a 75-year-old facility which was renovated less than 20 years ago. The stadium is not good enough for Red Sox ownership or Major League Baseball standards thanks to the 1990 Major League-Minor League agreement that mandated all minor-league parks be brought up to whatever are the Major League Baseball standards. Boston ownership claims the facility will be used year-round and will have a hotel complete with a retail and residential space. But minor league baseball doesn’t produce much economic impact and only offers per diem jobs. Then there are those pesky roads that could lead to the stadium that might need to be fixed. But forget the roads, Pawtucket needs a stadium.
Red Sox ownership maybe willing to pit Pawtucket versus Worcester in the stadium.