(Source: AzCentral): Catherine Reagor – If the Arizona Diamondbacks decide to leave downtown Phoenix’s Chase Field, where could the team play?
The Diamondbacks could abandon the ballpark as early as 2022 after striking a potential deal with Maricopa County this week. And if the Major League Baseball team finds another stadium location in the county, the team could leave Chase Field and its 25-acre site without penalty.
The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors will seek public comment at a session May 7 and is expected to vote May 9 on whether to finalize the agreement.
All questions about who’s paying for what aside … where might a ballpark be built?
Here are a list of potential sites compiled from Phoenix-area land experts and developers. Not all of the sites are centrally located, but all are near freeways.
One big question: How far will fans drive for those 81 regular-season home games?
Sites are listed by city size and are not in any particular order:
Downtown Phoenix. The Diamondbacks don’t have a lot of other options in the city’s core. But there’s been talk of a group trying to buy Southern Pacific’s offices and some land around it next to the railroad. The site near Seventh and Buchanan streets is close to Chase Field and near a lot of existing parking.
Old Greyhound Dog Park/current Phoenix Park ‘n’ Swap. This site near 40th and Washington streets could be big enough for a ballpark. There’s lot of airport parking nearby. The city of Phoenix owns the site, it’s close to light rail and is surrounded by Interstate 10, Loop 202 and State Route 143.
Interstate 17 and Loop 303. There’s a big chunk of state land near the junctions of these two freeways on the city’s north side. The state land agency could expedite an auction for the site. It’s a growing area in Phoenix but might be too far away for East Valley fans.
Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport/Eastmark. A group of dairy farmers is rezoning a large piece of land that’s big enough to house a new ballpark, next to Loop 202 and the proposed State Route 24 intersection. The land is west of the Eastmark community and north of the airport. Too far away for West Valley fans?
Kyrene and Loop 202. A 70-acre site is for sale in Chandler next to Loop 202 and east of Interstate 10, but it might be too far from the central Valley, too.
Near University of Phoenix Stadium and the Arizona Cardinals. There’s a 340-acre site on the west side of Loop 101 and kitty-corner from the University of Phoenix Stadium that has ample space for a ballpark and parking. The Arizona Coyotes play at Gila River Arena, just north of the Cardinals stadium. This is a top pick by land experts for a new Valley home for the Diamondbacks. But there’s no light rail; Glendale nixed plans for it last fall.s
Salt River Reservation
Salt River Fields at Talking Stick. The Diamondbacks play during spring training at the stadium next to Loop 101 and south of East Via de Ventura. It’s located on the Salt River Reservation, and there’s plenty of vacant land nearby. Baseball fans already make the drive there for Cactus League games.
Near soccer stadium. There’s land available close to the professional soccer team Phoenix Rising’s proposed stadium near the northwest corner of Loops 101 and 202 near the Scottsdale/Tempe city limits. The land is owned by the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community. The soccer team wants to build a $250 million stadium where it has a temporary facility now.
Town Lake. There’s not a lot of vacant land in Tempe for a new ballpark near freeways, but there are spots next to Arizona State University. There are a couple of sites in or near the Novus Innovation Corridor around McClintock Drive and Loop 202. ASU owns the land parcels in the Novus Innovation Corridor.