After many years of intense lobbying at the State Legislature, city officials today announced that Saint Paul’s No. 1 legislative priority will become a reality as Saint Paul moves forward with the construction of the Lowertown Regional Ballpark after being named a recipient of Department of Employment and Economic Development grant funds.
“After years of dedication and advocacy, we are about to bring baseball into downtown Saint Paul. This is a huge day for the City of Saint Paul and our state. I want to thank Governor Dayton for his support and DEED for recognizing the value of this ballpark. Both our legislative delegation and the Saint Paul business community saw the big picture and understood the potential of this project. Finally, I have an enormous amount of appreciation for all the Saint Paul city employees who worked for years to make this project happen, “ Mayor Chris Coleman said. “The ballpark will bring hundreds of thousands of people to downtown, will create hundreds of new, well-paying jobs, and its construction will represent our community and our values. This is a defining moment for our city.”
The Lowertown Regional Ballpark will act as home to the Saint Paul Saints and amateur baseball from across the region. It is expected to bring 400,000 people per year to downtown Saint Paul and will have a yearly economic impact in the millions of dollars. The project is expected to create 500 full and part-time jobs and will become a center for statewide youth and amateur sporting events.
Saint Paul’s announcement came just minutes after Governor Dayton’s office named the projects to be awarded financing from the bonding fund that DEED was set to allocate from at the end of the 2012 Legislative session. Saint Paul will receive $25 million from that fund.
The City of Saint Paul negotiated a land swap with the Port Authority and closed on the Diamond Products property, the future site of the Lowertown Regional Ballpark, in late July. The city will now start the process of hiring contractors and prep work to clean up the site. Demolition will begin this fall.