The Marlins and Cardinals have “reached an agreement with Palm Beach County that could keep both teams at Roger Dean Stadium for the next 16 years,” according to Capozzi & Playford of the PALM BEACH POST. The current lease runs through ’17. The proposed 10-year lease extension "doesn't guarantee the Marlins and Cardinals will actually stay in Jupiter for spring training through 2027.” At the "insistence of the teams, the proposal includes a clause that would let them leave" if the Mets or Nationals “move from Florida's East Coast.” The Marlins, Cardinals, Mets and Nationals are “the only teams that still" hold their Spring Training on Florida's East Coast. The proposed lease also applies to the Class A minor-league teams based at Roger Dean Stadium. The Marlins operate the Jupiter Hammerheads and the Cardinals run the Palm Beach Cardinals. The new agreement “creates a $5 million fund for additions to the facility -- $4 million provided by the county and $1 million by the teams.” Palm Beach County Facilities Development & Operations Department Dir Audrey Wolf said that the proposal will be “considered by the Tourist Development Council on April 14 before going to the County Commission on May 3” (PALM BEACH POST, 3/17). Cardinals President Bill DeWitt III said, “We were concerned that there wouldn’t be enough teams to play. We wanted to make sure that was accounted for, and that with the state, the county, and the municipalities it was worth their while to keep teams on the southeast side” (STLTODAY.com, 3/16).
Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage on Thursday announced that “with NASCAR Sprint Cup Series ratings on the rise, so are ticket sales" for the April 9 Samsung Mobile 500, the first-ever night Cup race at the track. Gossage said that season-ticket sales “have increased 31 percent from one year ago and he thinks the increase has been boosted by a huge surge since the season-opening Daytona 500.” Since that race on Feb. 20, TMS has seen a 143% “spike in new season-ticket accounts in just under a one-month period to a year ago." Similarly, last year's season-ticket base has been "very receptive and is running at an 87 percent renewal rate" (SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-NEWS, 3/18).
NOT ALL NEWS IS GOOD NEWS: In N.Y., Charles Bagli notes the Nets' Barclays Center is “taking shape" in Brooklyn, but “revelations in the past few days have brought renewed attention to the rest” of the 22-acre Atlantic Yards project, under the direction of developer Bruce Ratner. A federal bribery case last week against N.Y. state Sen. Carl Kruger “turned up a recording of an executive" at Forest City Ratner, “pressing Mr. Kruger for $9 million to rebuild the Carlton Avenue Bridge at Atlantic Yards.” FCR “did not get the money, and the executive was not accused of any wrongdoing, but the recording did bring unwanted attention to the company’s desperate search for financing.” Also, FCR this week confirmed that it was “considering erecting a 34-story prefabricated, or modular, tower, as a way of cutting its construction costs and fulfilling its obligation to start building housing” (N.Y. TIMES, 3/18).
SHOW ME THE MONEY: The Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission on Thursday said that it will receive $22.7M from its insurer, Affiliated FM, to “replace the 29-year-old roof" at the Metrodome that was damaged in a December blizzard. MSFC Commissioner Paul Thatcher said that “aside from the $25,000 deductible, that sum should cover the expense of replacing the roof and paying consultants” (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 3/18). In Minneapolis, Mike Kaszuba wonders if Vikings Owner Zygi Wilf's net worth should “matter as the team pushes for public subsidies for a new stadium.” Minnesota state Sen. Warren Limmer “thinks Wilf’s net worth may be fair game.” Limmer: “I think the real question is, what is the financial need of someone asking for help from state government to solve their private business problems?” (STARTRIBUNE.com, 3/17).