From the start of the Oakland Athletics’ years-long quest to build a new ballpark in the city, residents and officials wanted to know: How much will this project cost taxpayers?
Now, years into the team’s bid to build a $12 billion project that includes a 35,000-seat ballpark, housing, retail, a hotel and more, with the team pushing to get a vote on the project by year’s end, it’s still not clear exactly how much public money is involved.
While the team is “privately financing” the stadium, taxpayers are likely to put hundreds of millions of dollars into surrounding infrastructure if the project gets approved and built.
Concerns about the issue bubbled up when Oakland released a memo Sept. 20 that detailed the status of negotiations with the team and outlined a number of regional, state and federal grants the city is securing. Those government grants total $321.5 million to help pay for offsite infrastructure. But that funding might not be enough.