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MLB’s Oakland A’s mull major move

Major League Baseball’s Oakland A’s have begun to look at options for relocation with plans for a new home in Oakland stalled.

The move comes after MLB issued a statement saying it was worried about the lack of progress on their proposed waterfront ballpark near Howard Terminal in Oakland.

The A’s proposed project at Howard Terminal includes a plan for 3,000 new homes in addition to a new 34,000-seat stadium, 18 acres of new parks and open spaces all around the area. MLB said:

MLB is concerned with the rate of progress on the A’s new ballpark effort with local officials and other stakeholders in Oakland. The A’s have worked very hard to advance a new ballpark in downtown Oakland for the last four years, investing significant resources while facing multiple roadblocks. We know they remain deeply committed to succeeding in Oakland, and with two other sports franchises recently leaving the community, their commitment to Oakland is now more important than ever.

The team currently play at the Oakland Coliseum. The A’s and MLB have both taken a view that the location is not a viable option for the future of the club.

The current lease on the Oakland Coliseum, where the A’s have played since 1968, expires in 2024.

A’s president Dave Kaval has urged Oakland City Council to vote on the new stadium project before summer recess, which begins July 28 and runs through August 31. Kaval said:

It’s important to remember that we made a proposal to the city that they’re sitting on. We’re hopeful that they take that up before the summer recess. It’s a really robust financial offer to privately finance the stadium, invest $12 billion in private capital and have $450 million in community benefits. That’s something that we’ve advanced as an organization. I think it’s important that people know that and know we’re still pushing towards that. But at the same time, we’re running out of time here at the Coliseum.

A’s owner John Fisher said in a statement:

The future success of the A’s depends on a new ballpark. Oakland is a great baseball town, and we will continue to pursue our waterfront ballpark project. We will also follow MLB’s direction to explore other markets.