Winter Park wants to court minor league baseball - FOX 35 News Orlando

Winter Park wants to court minor league baseball

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The City of Winter Park said it would love to have a minor league baseball team, but only if someone else pays for the needed stadium. Spokeswoman Clarissa Howard said having a minor league team in the city would be a boost.

"Any minor league team, whether it be baseball or hockey or football, would bring more people to our city. That would help our business district, that would help our feet on the street.  It would help in our economic development, spurring of that. So having something like that in our city would be an asset."

Rollins College has been exploring a partnership with a minor league team that would renovate and upgrade Alfond Stadium.  It has neither the seating, nor the amenities needed to lure a team from somewhere else.  Howard said it's a terrific idea, but one the city will not do on it's own.

"It's not in the city budget or currently in our plans for a baseball stadium. That's why we are asking it from the state or from people that are interested in bringing baseball to our city," she said.

The city has put money to renovate Alfond Stadium, or a grant of land or money to build a new stadium on its legislative priorities list.  Howard said state taxpayers funding a stadium is one of only a few ways the deal could get done.

"That list that is on the agenda for today is a wish list for state funding."

The city would also look for any private entities that would want to own or bring in a team to help with the estimated $11 million in renovation costs.  Rollins College also said it could not afford the renovations costs on their own.

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