11/2 Mesa vote
Tuesday may be the day the fate of the Cubs’ Spring Training site is decided. Voters in Mesa are being asked to approve Proposition 420, which would allow the city of Mesa to spend up to $99 million on a new Spring Training facility for the Cubs.
The money includes $84 million for a stadium, practice fields and training facilities and $15 million for infrastructure. The Cubs’ owners would fund a “Wrigleyville West” retail district around the complex, which would be built at the current Riverview Park site.
If Proposition 420 passes, the Cubs hope to be in their new facility in 2013. The Cubs feel they’ve outgrown the current Mesa sites at HoHoKam Park and Fitch Park and that they are outdated. A study has shown that the team brings in $138 million annually to the Phoenix area.
The city of Mesa will pay for the facility by tapping into a $60 million enterprise fund. Mesa officials say they will sell large land holdings in Pinal County to replenish the fund. Other sources for money include a hotel bed tax and taxes from the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority.
– Carrie Muskat