Saffo: City considering several locations for ballpark

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — You might say the City of Wilmington is still in the first inning of the effort to bring baseball to town. City leaders say there’s still a lot to be done including where to build.

Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo says it’s time to figure out the logistics of building a new baseball stadium in the Port City. He says various locations are under consideration.

“As of today, we’ve had several people that have come forward to talk to us about the possibility of selling their property for the ballpark,” said Saffo, who would not give details of specific locations.

Linda Register represents a plot of land across the river from the Convention Center. She says the location is perfect for the new stadium.

“First of all, we already have a decent highway system that comes right by this property,” she said. “Second of all, it’s right on the point where the two rivers connect, and I think there’s almost eight acres here, so there’s ample space. And you could be sitting in the stadium and what would your view be but downtown Wilmington.”

Register says if the ballpark is built across the river from downtown, it would help build up the riverfront on both sides.

“I think if we can make this as beautiful as the other side then we would have a total inner harbor experience,” Register said.

Figuring out where the park should go is just one of the issues facing the city. It plans to spend about $433,000 over the next year and a half just on various costs tied to the negotiations.

Saffo says the city is working to ease residents’ concerns.

“We have to have it all evaluated and processed, so when we come out with what this thing is going to cost, people will know exactly what those numbers are,” Saffo said.

Register says she has not yet formally presented the property to the city, but she hopes to do that next week.

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