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IN TAMPA, RAYS HAVING A DEVIL OF A TIME WITH TROPICANA FIELD
Published March 25, 1998
Efforts to get Tropicana Field ready for the Devil Rays opener on Tuesday "are running into a stack of problems," with the "biggest headache" being a lack of glass, "especially glass that fits," according to David Rogers of the ST. PETERSBURG TIMES. Assistant city attorney Mirella James sent a "blistering letter" to FL-based BCI Industries, the contractor for the glass installation, which "detailed the civic humiliation" the city has endured. James wrote that the leaks in the facility's rotunda during last week's NCAA tournament generated "negative news coverage" for the stadium and caused "irreparable harm" to the community and to the Devil Rays. The Devil Rays had no comment on the situation. Rogers writes that the glass dispute "merely tops the list" of problems at Tropicana. As of yesterday, "only about" one-third of the temporary seating erected for the NCAAs had been dismantled, and crews "still need several days" to haul in the dirt and unroll the surface of the Devil Rays' field (ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 3/24). MORE TROUBLE? Tampa Bay resident and disabled activist George Locascio says that Tropicana Field is "deficient of state and federal standards for disabled people." Locascio, who in '91 successfully sued the city and forced officials to add "about" $700,000 worth of improvements to make the stadium more accessible for disabled visitors, voiced his feelings yesterday at a meeting of stadium architects, city lawyers and disabled activists. City lawyer Mirella James and legal consultant Fred Lyon said that they met with Devil Rays managing partner Vince Naimoli yesterday to "review ADA compliance and other problems" (ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 3/25).