Exterior of Oakland Coliseum, Home of the Oakland Athletics

One look at the exterior of Oakland Coliseum, home of the Oakland Athletics, and it becomes blatantly obvious that the team needs an upgrade in it's home stadium. Well friends, that day seems to be drawing near. The Oakland Athletics have chosen the future site of their new stadium and it sits near Laney College. The plot of land the team is interested in sits between Lake Merritt and I-880. Currently, there are warehouses, parking lots and offices that belong to the Peralta Community College District occupying the area. The Athletics organization will need to purchase and raze the entire area before construction can begin. The ballpark is not expected to be constructed for several more years.

Laney College in Oakland, California

The earliest the Athletics are expected to break ground on the new stadium is in 2021 which means the ballpark will open circa 2023 or 2024. Are Bay Area baseball fans prepared to wait that long? Is Rob Manfred prepared to wait that long? The new ballpark will be privately financed and have a capacity of 35,000 seats which would make it one of the smallest ballparks in Major League Baseball. Construction costs are expected to exceed $500 million. Taxpayers aren’t completely off the hook with this project, however. The Athletics will need to partner with the Oakland City Council to come up with millions of dollars for infrastructure improvements, new freeway ramps and improvements to the nearby shoreline if it’s serious about building the stadium near Laney College.

Other potential sites that have been discussed in the past include Howard Terminal, Jack London Square and the site currently occupied by Oracle Arena (home of the Golden State Warriors). Oracle Arena sits adjacent to Oakland Coliseum; the Warriors will be relocating to San Francisco in the near future. The Oakland Athletics have played their home games at Oakland Coliseum since moving from Kansas City in 1968. Oakland Coliseum is also home to the NFL’s Oakland Raiders; the only stadium left that is home to both a professional football and baseball team.

Oakland Athletics President Dave Kaval is hoping that the current site of Oakland Coliseum will become a community sports park and baseball academy that is officially affiliated with Major League Baseball. The Oakland Alameda County Coliseum Authority would need to ultimately approve of that plan further down the road. Kaval and the Athletics are also mindful of local businesses near Laney College that could be uprooted with the construction of a new baseball stadium.

 

Reference:

SFGate.com

 

 

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