KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — City council members voted to move forward with the multi-use stadium project Tuesday night.
The main topic of discussion at the meeting was the future of a proposed multi-use stadium project.
The County Commission passed an agreement Monday and the sports authority approved the motion this Tuesday morning. Now, it was the city’s turn to debate.
Many city council members and those who attended the meeting had a lot to say, both for and against a vote on a revised agreement between the city, county and sports authority on the multi-use stadium project.
“It’s more than just a stadium,” said one person at the podium. “Like you said, it’s over 100 million in private development that will create jobs, provide housing and create new retail and entertainment opportunities.”
Several changes were needed to help with rising inflation costs and supply chain shortages, including reduced square footage.
The project’s special tax zone footprint is also being expanded to bolster funding.
“This stadium will revitalize a site that has been vacant for 20 years and an area that has lacked investment for even longer,” Mayor of Knoxville Indya Kincannon said.
Randy Boyd and members of his council were in attendance, answering questions from city leaders and taking heat from those who were against the rising cost of the project.
“Jobs with justice urges you not to go forward without a guarantee that the developer cannot pass on additional costs to the community however they are characterized,” another unidentified person said at the podium.
Council Member Amelia Parker felt strongly about rushing to start the approval of the project.
“It’s extremely irresponsible for us to move forward without getting those guarantees and agreements in place,” Parker said.
Despite the concerns, the city council chose to move forward with the agreement, voting 6 to 2 with one member absent.
The goal is to have the stadium open by the 2025 baseball season.