The Texas Rangers look to break ground on a new ballpark despite opening up their current venue just 22 years ago.
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram points to a $900 million retractable-roof stadium coming to Arlington. The Texas Rangers and the city of Arlington would jointly fund the new park fifty-fifty. The newspaper expects an announcement on the project as early as today.
The Dallas Morning News reports that sources expect the new ballpark to open prior to the 2024 season. The newspaper notes, “Construction of a new stadium likely would be subject to an election by Arlington voters — probably to dedicate sales tax and potentially parking and ticket taxes to the construction effort.”
The team’s lease with Arlington runs out after the 2023 season, allowing them to negotiate a new deal with Dallas, Fort Worth, or some other host. By rushing to an agreement on a new park, city leaders ensure that the Rangers remain in Arlington.
Globe Life Park opened as the Ballpark in Arlington in 1994 at a cost close to $200 million. It replaced Arlington Stadium, which the Rangers occupied for a similarly short period (1971-1993) after the Washington Senators relocated to Texas. Arlington provided funding for the two previous homes of the Rangers as it plans to do for the future home.
The construction of a new home so soon after the opening of a stadium is strange but not unprecedented. The Atlanta Braves moved to Turner Field in 1997 but plan to open SunTrust Park next season. The Rams migrated to Los Angeles this year despite St. Louis building them a stadium in 1995. The Atlanta Falcons move from the Georgia Dome after less than a quarter century of occupancy to Mercedes-Benz Stadium next season.
In both instances in Georgia, governments provided hundreds of millions of dollars to build the stadiums that replaced the relatively young existing venues.