Expert coming to see proposal

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Former Maryland Gov. Parris N. Glendening, regarded as a pioneer in "smart growth" land planning, will be in Augusta on Tuesday to look at the Garden City's proposed downtown stadium project.

The visit was initiated by regional business leader Bettis Rainsford, who mentioned the project to Mr. Glendening earlier this year.

"He was very interested about (the stadium project) because he has seen areas where stadiums have had tremendous impact on the downtown areas," Mr. Rainsford said.

Augusta Mayor Deke Copenhaver and baseball legend Cal Ripken Jr., part of the group that owns the Augusta GreenJackets baseball team, are urging construction of a baseball stadium on Georgia Golf Hall of Fame property along the Savannah River.

The proposal is in preliminary stages.

The mayor's executive assistant, Karyn Nixon, said the 17-acre tract is held by the state property commission and that a feasibility study has yet to be undertaken.

The proposed stadium, which could serve many uses, would seat 5,000 to 6,000 people and cost about $20 million to $25 million.

It would be funded through a private-public venture with Ripken Baseball, and Richmond County voters ultimately would have the final say.

The GreenJackets, an affiliate of the San Francisco Giants, currently play in 12-year-old Lake Olmstead Stadium off Milledge Road.

Whether the project moves forward would largely depend on the outcome of such a study, Ms. Nixon said.

Augusta businessman Clay Boardman said he hopes to raise $75,000 in private contributions to finance the feasibility study.

Mr. Glendening, the president of the Washington-based Smart Growth Leadership Institute, said in a phone interview that similar projects, such as the Camden Yards stadium constructed in downtown Baltimore while he was governor, have bolstered the housing, retail and hospitality industries.

"We just thought there was the potential for more than just a stadium," Mr. Glendening said. "If there is potential there, we hope to pull it together, and I think there is potential here."

Mr. Glendening is currently working on a resort project in Savannah, Ga., that will feature 900 resort homes on 100 acres of land.

On the net

For more information on the downtown stadium project, visit www.bringbaseballdown town.com.

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TrukinRanger
1748
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TrukinRanger 09/28/07 - 11:36 pm
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Bring it on.... Along with
Unpublished

Bring it on.... Along with the Convention Center,..Tee Center... and Ellis St. Canal...... I'm for all of them... some affordable (NOT Section 8) appartment homes designed for city living would be nice too!!

iletuknow
8
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iletuknow 09/29/07 - 12:07 am
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HeHe Mr Glendening is plenty

HeHe Mr Glendening is plenty experienced in land planning alright as his state has one of the highest property tax and sales tax rates in the country.Anyone looking around Baltimore would tell him not to waste his time.
Coincidence Mr Glendening is from Mr Ripkin's home state? I think not. Watch your wallet local taxpayers as the carpetbaggers are coming.
The final years of his second term as Governor were plagued by a marital crisis (see below) and a $2 billion state budget deficit.
On January 25, 2002, Glendening divorced his wife and married one of his deputy chiefs of staff, Jennifer Crawford, making her Glendening's third wife. Crawford was 35 at the time, considerably younger than the then-59-year-old Glendening, and she was pregnant at their wedding. She gave birth to a baby girl, Bri, on August 18, marking the first time since 1879 that a Maryland governor had a baby born during his term of office.

HTN007
19
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HTN007 09/29/07 - 02:53 am
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"Watch your wallet local

"Watch your wallet local taxpayers as the carpetbaggers are coming."...........thank you VERY much for this well done "heads up"!

Concerned Friend
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Concerned Friend 09/29/07 - 04:07 am
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Can't come close to filling

Can't come close to filling up the stadium now that the greenjackets play in, why in the world build another facility? No one goes back downtown at night to support any venues in large numbers. Stay where you are!

getalife
4
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getalife 09/29/07 - 05:58 am
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If the current stadium was

If the current stadium was being filled each night that might be different, but it is not. I won't go downtown after dark until the hoods and criminals are gone.

coco rubio
53
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coco rubio 09/29/07 - 10:32 am
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part of the problem with the

part of the problem with the current stadium not being filled to capacity regularly is the current location.......the new proposed location would be a huge boost to downtown's current revitilzation.......those that say that no one comes downtown at night has obviously not been downtown on any weekend night.......you might have to step out of suburbs at some time.....that super target & walmart are not utopia......see ya at the ballgame......take me out to the ballpark!!!

jleyes
24
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jleyes 09/29/07 - 10:47 am
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Coco, well put. I am always

Coco, well put. I am always amazed at how people constantly rebuttal the proposed stadium by making it seem like Lake Olmstead is some grand palace in a golden city neighborhood. Lake Olmstead maybe located in the city of Augusta, but it is not downtown! People may also be suprised that the Harrisburg district is no safer then the proposed site and in fact less so, yet you never hear of incidents at Lake Olmstead Stadium. I am certain even more steps would be made to make fans feel safe at the new site. BTW the fabled Camden Yards was built in what once was an undesirable location in Baltimore.

Why
3
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Why 09/29/07 - 11:25 am
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We have a perfectly good

We have a perfectly good stadium- most cities would die for! Use the money to clean up Augusta and put some sidewalks along Washington Road before a pedestrian at the Masters or a young soldier is run over....INSANE!

jleyes
24
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jleyes 09/29/07 - 11:55 am
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The stadium would help clean

The stadium would help clean up Augusta, that's the point. More importantly it will be a catalyst to spark development for downtown.

www.bringbaseballdowntown.com

If so many cities were willing to die to have a stadium such as Lake Olmstead Stadium maybe they could come haul it and provide the money they raise from selling it to them for those sidewalks on Washington Rd.

coco rubio
53
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coco rubio 09/29/07 - 11:58 am
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it's pretty sad when we have

it's pretty sad when we have to choose between sidewalks on washington road & a modern downtown stadium......gee, god forbid we do all of these things and more to improve our community......right?

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