A special event hosted by long-time Los Angeles Dodgers announcer Vin Scully marked last week’s groundbreaking for a baseball spring training facility in Glendale that will accommodate the Dodgers and, eventually, the Chicago White Sox. The Glendale Municipal Property Corp. will issue revenue bonds to finance the $80.7 million facility. The debt will be supported by annual allocations from the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority and by sales taxes generated on site and at a planned development around the ballpark. The AZSTA pledged in December 2006 to finance two-thirds of the project in the Phoenix suburb, but it won’t be able to begin paying debt service until 2018. Glendale eventually will get more than $50 million for the training complex from the authority. The Dodgers will move into the facility from their current spring training site at Vero Beach, Fla., in 2009 if construction is completed in time, or in 2010 at the latest. The spring training complex will include a 13,000-seat stadium with 3,000 lawn seats, two major league fields and four minor league fields per team, workout fields, a large clubhouse, and parking for 5,000 vehicles. The White Sox currently train in Tucson under a 15-year contract with Pima County that expires in 2013. The team can move to Glendale before then if it pays $28 million to break the lease or finds a replacement team for Tucson Electric Park.
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