Jeff Chiu / AP
Published Tuesday, July 20, 2021 | 1:32 p.m.
Updated 42 minutes ago
The Oakland City Council today approved a term sheet for a ballpark and land development proposal that would lead to a $1 billion new home for the Oakland A’s.
The vote was the latest step in a process by which city leaders and officials from the A’s have tried to hammer out a deal for a waterfront ballpark to keep the Major League Baseball team in the San Francisco Bay Area.
As talks between the city and the team have moved forward in recent months — often in a contentious manner — A’s officials have openly considered the possibility of a move to the Las Vegas area.
It appears the vote for the nonbinding term sheet didn’t kill the chances of the team relocating to Southern Nevada.
While speaking via video to council members before today’s vote, A’s President Dave Kaval said “voting yes to something we don’t have agreement around is not a path forward” for a new ballpark.
“This is not a term sheet that works for the A’s,” Kaval said. “It’s not something that we agree with, and we don’t think it’s that beneficial to have a vote on something that doesn’t have consensus.”
Kaval said there “has been progress in the negotiations” in recent weeks, though the city and the organization still seem far apart on a number of areas of the proposal.
Those include how much the city would pay for infrastructure and transportation improvements around what would be a $12 billion combined ballpark and mixed-use development.
“As it’s constructed, the term sheet is not a business partnership that works for us,” Kaval said.
After hearing Kaval’s comments, Oakland City Councilwoman Carroll Fife wondered aloud “why we’re even here today.”
Fife was the lone council member to abstain from voting. The affirmative vote was 6-1, with Councilman Noel Gallo representing the lone no vote.
Kaval said last week that A’s officials planned to visit Las Vegas again this week.
The team has said it is considering more than 20 possible ballpark sites around the Las Vegas Valley, including in Henderson and Summerlin.
“We are open to continuing discussions with the Oakland A’s on the possibility of relocating to Henderson,” city spokeswoman Kathleen Richards said in a statement.
It remains unclear how any stadium project in the valley would be funded Most professional sports stadiums built in the United States in the past three decades have been at least partially funded by public money, including the $2 billion Allegiant Stadium, home to the Las Vegas Raiders NFL franchise.
The A’s have stated that they would like to have a ballpark deal in Oakland before the City Council’s August recess.
Today’s vote allows the team and the city to move forward in negotiations for the 55-acre Howard Terminal site. The A’s and Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred have expressed urgency for a ballpark solution in Oakland.
The team’s home ballpark, RingCentral Coliseum, is widely considered to be one of the worst home parks in baseball. The aging stadium has been the team’s home since the A’s moved to Oakland from Kansas City in 1968.
The A’s did not have an immediate response to the City Council’s vote.