ST PETERSBURG, FL (WFLA) – St. Petersburg’s city council approved an offer that could allow the Tampa Bay Rays to build a new stadium outside of the city.
Councilman Jim Kennedy proposed a plan to allow the team to look for a new location if they are willing to compensate the city with a redevelopment fee. The current contract keeps the Rays at Tropicana Field until 2027. After that the team is free to go where ever they want. The Rays are currently last in attendance in major league baseball.
Councilman Kennedy’s plan calls for the team to pay $5 million if they look to build a new stadium in Hillsborough County. The team would pay $2.5 million if they build in Pinellas county and there would be no redevelopment fee if the team builds a new stadium in the city.
St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman says if the city does not allow the team to look they will move outside of the Bay Area in 2027.
He also believes if they are given a chance to look now, they will stay in the city. “I’ve never shied away from allowing them to look in Pinellas or Hillsborough because ultimately I think they will determine the best sight is right where they’re at,” said Kriseman. The mayor says the offer is not a binding agreement, but he will now call the teem to set up a meeting to discuss it.