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May 24, 2018

Mariners commit to 25-year, $650 million investment

By: Andrew Lenderman   Comments: 0

Mariners fans can keep singing “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” for another 25 years.

This week’s news that the Seattle Mariners signed a new lease agreement with the state’s Public Facilities District means the Mariners will remain a long-term economic anchor for Seattle and the surrounding areas, and Washington families can enjoy a top-notch ballpark for years to come.

“This is great news for Washington’s economy and our quality of life,” AWB President Kris Johnson said. “Safeco Field is one of the greatest, most enjoyable ballparks in the country and a real point of pride for the region. It was a trendsetter when it was built and many of its features have been replicated in ballparks across the country. It’s been the scene of so many exciting moments over the years, and we look forward to many more memories. There’s nothing like taking in a Mariners game with family and friends.”

The Washington State Major League Baseball Stadium Public Facilities District approved the 25-year lease on Wednesday. It includes two options to extend the lease by three years, which could extend the agreement through 2049. The team’s current 20-year lease expires at the end of this year.

The new lease includes investments of $650 million in the ballpark and the city. The deal also means major maintenance, operations and construction investments that will impact the region for decades.

The Mariners will spend $55 million on rent, $125 million on capital improvements, $250 million on maintenance and operations and will collect about $175 million from taxes on parking and tickets. That money will also be directed to the newly-created capital expenditures fund.

The team will also contribute to the new Neighborhood Improvement Fund to support community projects in the areas around Safeco Field.

The Mariners will pay 80 percent of the capital, operations and maintenance costs over the life of the lease, the team reported.

The team’s impact creates jobs throughout the community: Carpenters and electricians. Contractors and marketing professionals. Food service workers and security guards.

"We want this ballpark to be our home for the next 100 years. Safeco Field should be to Seattle and to the Mariners what Wrigley Field is to Chicago and the Cubs and Fenway Park is to Boston and the Red Sox,” said Seattle Mariners Chairman and Managing Partner John Stanton. “We sincerely appreciate our partnership with the PFD, who share our vision to ensure that our fans will continue to enjoy Major League Baseball in a state-of-the-art facility for decades to come."

We'll second that motion, and see you at the game.

(Photo by Joe Mabel / wikicommons.)