Plans reportedly unveiled for Oakland ballpark
Proposed 38,000-seat waterfront stadium would reside west of Jack London Square
OAKLAND -- As part of an ongoing effort to keep the A's in Oakland, city business and political leaders have unleashed new plans for a $500 million ballpark at the Port of Oakland, just west of Jack London Square.
According to a San Francisco Chronicle report, the 38,000-seat ballpark is being proposed by a team led by Clorox chairman and CEO Don Knauss and T. Gary Rogers, former CEO of Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream. Oakland Mayor Jean Quan approves of the bid.
"It's one of the two sites we promised Major League Baseball we would offer, and it will be available early next year," Quan told The Chronicle.
The other site is the Oakland Coliseum, where the A's will continue to play through at least 2015, per a new lease extension.
"Trust me, Oakland is hot now," Quan continued, "and a lot of developers would love that [waterfront] site if it doesn't become a baseball stadium."
But A's owners John Fisher and Lew Wolff must first get on board with the idea, and Wolff -- a longtime proponent of moving his team to San Jose -- doesn't sound so enticed, telling The Chronicle "it would be easier to build on Treasure Island."
"All I care about is getting a new home for the A's in the best possible circumstances -- and under any circumstances, Howard Terminal would be as close to impossible as anything."
Leaders of the proposal believe so strongly in it, however, that they're willing to form an ownership group of their own to buy the team should Wolff and Fisher not want to involve themselves in these efforts, even though Wolff has repeatedly stated he's not looking to sell the club.
The group will soon ask the Port of Oakland for control of the 50-acre Howard Terminal site, telling The Chronicle it already has the funds to start an environmental review and get the regulatory approval process started. Drawings of the stadium are already in the works.
Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.