Minor league ballpark, mixed-use complex planned near Trinity River in Dallas
08:23 AM CDT on Thursday, April 23, 2009
By STEVE BROWN / The Dallas Morning News
A real estate and sports group has purchased a large development site on the banks of the Trinity River near downtown. The new owners of the 60-acre property on Industrial Boulevard say they hope to build a $500 million mixed-use project anchored by a minor league baseball park – set to open next year.
The team working on the project includes Oak Cliff developer Richard Seib and Reunion Sports Group LLC, a minor league baseball company headed by former Dallas congressman John Bryant and his partner Byron Pierce.
The new owners bought the property with the approval of lenders who recently had posted the land for foreclosure.
A large-scale apartment and retail development was previously planned for the site near Cadiz Street, but that deal fell through.
"We are very excited about the opportunity to develop this property," said Matt Holley, a local builder who is working with Seib on the Industrial development and his $200 million La Reunion Town Center project in Oak Cliff. "There is still a lot of planning to do.
"Our intention is for the ballpark to be up and operational in 2010."
The development group says it plans to do the project with private funding. The land has been purchased, but financing has yet to be arranged for much of the development.
Pierce said the plans for the ballpark are on the fast track with an opening set for next May.
"We think it's one of the best markets in the U.S. for a minor league baseball park," he said. "The movement for minor league baseball now is to come into the large metropolitan areas.
"Businesses are moving back into the downtown area, bringing young professionals and families," he said.
Besides the ballpark, the new owners envision a water park and hotel, 2,500 apartments, retail and restaurants. A pedestrian bridge and walkway will connect the project to the nearby Cedars DART rail station.
"They want the development to be a mixed-use entertainment district," Holley said.