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NEWS RELEASE

City of Goodyear, Arizona

Public Information Office

 

For Immediate Release: April 7, 2008 – 8:30 p.m.

 

BREAKING  NEWS

The Reds are coming! The Reds are coming!

 

GOODYEAR, AZ – The Cincinnati Reds will soon call Goodyear, Arizona their new Spring Training home.

 

In a 6-0 vote, Goodyear city councilmembers tonight approved a Memorandum Of Understanding that paves the way for the Reds to move their spring training operations to Goodyear in 2010.

 

The parties have until June 30 to finalize an agreement that will include a 20-year lease and two five-year team options.

 

With this agreement, the Reds will become the second Major League Baseball team to set up spring training in Goodyear, joining the Cleveland Indians. The Indians will toss out their first Spring Training pitch in February 2009; the Reds will begin training here in 2010.

 

The state-of-the art ballpark will cost $108 million, and sport two clubhouses of at least 38,000 square feet each. There will be six full practice fields and two half-fields, as well as a stadium with seating for 10,000 fans and plenty of on-site retail space. Construction is expected to begin on the Reds’ portion of the facilities in February 2009, and should be ready for the team in time for Spring Training 2010.

 

"The proposed facilities in Goodyear are going to be some of the best in baseball," said Reds’ Chief Executive Officer Bob Castellini. "We look forward to a working relationship with the city that will help our team prepare for the start of the

Major League season every year."

 

Both the Reds and the Indians will pay about $100,000 per year in rent, with upward adjustments to cover inflation. The 20-year agreement includes options that allow for two five-year renewals.

 

The Reds’ portion of the project -- $32 million -- will be financed largely with public improvement corporation bonds, and will cost the city about $1.5 million in payments each year.

 

Goodyear and the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority have reached a tentative agreement to secure future revenues to pay for two-thirds of the approved project costs, and to increase reimbursement for the Indians’ facilities to two-thirds, up from 50 percent. Debt service payments for the Reds’ project will be paid for primarily from Goodyear’s revolving fund budget, and could be supplemented with a proposed 1 percent increase to the hotel bed tax.

 

Officials estimate that each Cactus League team generates about $26.3 million each year for the local economy. Goodyear anticipates 30,000 to 40,000 new visitors to the West Valley city each year, once the ballpark opens.

 

Today’s meeting was the culmination of negotiations that began on January 30 when the Reds and the city of Goodyear entered into a 75-day exclusivity agreement and began working out the details. On March 12, Goodyear City Council announced it had identified the funding for the project, pending approval at tonight’s meeting.

 

The Reds have been training in Sarasota, Florida, since 1998.

 

The baseball stadium and training complex is located about 20 minutes from downtown Phoenix, at the foot of the Estrella Mountains on Estrella Parkway, south of Yuma Road, in Goodyear, Ariz.

 

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City of Goodyear • 190 N. Litchfield Road • Goodyear AZ 85338 • Phone 623-932-3910 • Toll-Free 1-800-872-1749