By Rebekah L. Sanders for The Arizona Republic
The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Aug. 17 to move forward with negotiations to sell Chase Field, the downtown Phoenix home of the Arizona Diamondbacks, to private out-of-state investors.
The buyers would be required to purchase the stadium and land for no less than $60M. County officials said that figure is higher than a 2010 appraisal that never was finalized, which valued the stadium at about $40M.
But the county vote raised several key questions that went unanswered, including whether the team would support a sale and whether a taxpayer subsidy would be included.
The move comes amid tension between the county and the Diamondbacks over who is responsible for as much as $187M in repairs to the 18-year-old baseball stadium. Opened in 1998, it is owned entirely by the county despite a team investment of more than $200M in construction and enhancements. County taxpayers provided roughly $250M to build it.
Any sale would require the consent of the Diamondbacks. County officials said they have not talked in depth with the team about the deal, and the buyer will be responsible for negotiating an agreement with the team.
If the team agrees to move forward, county officials said they will hire an appraiser to determine the actual value of the property, with a goal to finish a review within 30 to 45 days.
If the appraisal shows the value is greater than $60M, the buyer would be required to meet or exceed the appraised value, county officials said, or abandon the deal. The agreement also allows the buyer access to inspect the stadium.
Read more at The Arizona Republic