Cobb County sets Braves bond sale for summer, despite not having finished any stadium agreements

The Cobb County Commission has updated its checklist of what it needs to get done before selling Atlanta Braves stadium bonds — something it hopes to do as early as this summer — and guys, it is totally awesome. Check out just part of it:

• Negotiation/Approval/Execution of Development Agreement (Cobb Board of Commissioners to approve)
• Negotiation/Approval/Execution of Operating Agreement (Cobb Board of Commissioners to approve)
• Negotiation/Approval/Execution of Non-Relocation Agreement  (Cobb Board of Commissioners to approve)
• Negotiation/Approval/Execution of Transportation and Infrastructure Agreement  (Cobb Board of Commissioners to approve)
• Negotiation/Approval/Execution of Intergovernmental Agreement  (Cobb Board of Commissioners to approve)

Okay, that would just be working out the terms of pretty much everything important about the project, other than that it would involve baseball and the county would put up a lot of the money up front. We knew some of this already, but the idea that the county is giving itself at most six months to work out five major agreements, hold public hearings (oh wait, I forgot, Cobb County doesn’t believe in public hearings when they can be avoided), and vote to approve them is … ambitious? Crazy? Crazy ambitious? Ambitiously crazy? One of those.

Anyway, assuming there are a bunch of county lawyers currently huddling with Braves lawyers working all this stuff out, and everyone can come to a quick agreement, then there’s nothing standing in the way of the Braves’ new home other than—

• Stadium property conveyed from Braves to Coliseum Hall Authority (Coliseum and Exhibit Hall Authority Board to approve)
• RFP for project manager (Cobb Purchasing Department to issue)
• Permit and inspect plans for pipeline relocation (Cobb Community Development to issue)
• Circulator design project awarded (Cobb Board of Commissioners to approve)
• Process application for Rezoning to accommodate development surrounding stadium site (Cobb Community Development to review)
• Public Safety discussions with Braves Security to assess public safety needs at stadium  (Cobb DPS to lead)

Okay, okay, but other than that

• Process application for Development of Regional Impact Review (Cobb Community Development to review)
• Stadium footprint determined (Atlanta Braves)
• Pedestrian bridge bid package released (Cobb DOT)

So, other than working out what kind of stadium to build, how it will be paid for, who will get the revenues and pay operating costs, how the traffic will work, and how long the Braves will promise to stay as part of the deal, everything is totally set for a stadium opening in 2017. With certainty like that, might as well just sell the bonds now — what could possibly go wrong?


2 comments on “Cobb County sets Braves bond sale for summer, despite not having finished any stadium agreements

  1. In spite of incredible uncertainty behind all this, I bet they sell these bonds in just a few days.

    The bond market seems to think, “Oh, they’ll work it out. Cities always do.”

  2. This project will fail and the Braves will move elsewhere because the city of Atlanta is not interested in baseball as of this point.

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