Arizona Board of Regents approves new UA lease for Hi Corbett - Tucson News Now

Arizona Board of Regents approves new UA lease for Hi Corbett

(Source: Tucson News Now) (Source: Tucson News Now)
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

The Arizona Board of Regents has approved a 25-year lease for the University of Arizona baseball team at Hi Corbett Field.

The board voted on the move on Thursday, April 6 during its meeting while the city of Tucson approved it last month. 

The votes came nearly four years before the old lease, signed in 2011, was set to expire.

Under the terms of the new lease, the University lease payments will be reduced from $262,000 annually to $10 a year.

In exchange, the University must make $3 million in improvements, take over management and operations of the field, and pay all utilities. 

The new lease was negotiated by City Attorney Mike Rankin. 

When the city approved the agreement in 2011, the future of the baseball stadium, built in 1927, was up in the air.

The Colorado Rockies left Hi Corbett after the city refused to agree to $20-30 million in upgrades to the stadium, which has been improved nearly a half dozen times since it was first built.

It has been widely agreed that the stadium has been a benefit to the university in several areas.

First of all, having the stadium off campus allows for beer sales, which has played a part in surging attendance, one of the highest in the league, according to a U of A coach. 

Secondly, it's a solid recruiting tool for the baseball program, which has seen its fortunes increase in recent years, including a national championship game appearance in 2016. 

"Everything here is major league," said Matt Morin, a former quarterback now baseball player. "So how much better can it get."

Most college fields must fit a smaller footprint, but since Hi Corbett was built for professional baseball and has been host to a variety of professional teams, it gives players an opportunity to develop skills for the next level.

"That's why they call it a major league training ground," he said. "It gives the hitters here a lot more perspective on how to hit at the next level."

The agreement will also allow the university to add batting cages, upgrade lights and more comfortable seating without having to rely on the generosity or unpredictability of outside donors. 

The city maintains its revenue stream, which includes 2 percent of all sales merchandise, food and beverage, which includes beer sales. 

By some estimates, the Tucson Parks and Recreation Department was spending nearly $900,000 a year to maintain the main baseball field and four other fields, some of which were used by U of A baseball.

The city saves that expenditure even though it gives up its lease receipts. 

It will take up to six months to install new meters which will separate Tucson costs from University costs for electricity. 

Both sides were working on the new agreement for a year. 

Copyright 2017 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

MOBILE USERS: Download our app to get breaking news alerts, weather forecasts and exclusive content on your Apple and Android devices.

  • Arizona Board of Regents approves new UA lease for Hi CorbettMore>>

  • Sports

    Sports

  • Local newsMore>>

  • HAPPENING NOW: Water main break closes part of Mission road

    HAPPENING NOW: Water main break closes part of Mission road

    Sunday, May 28 2017 7:18 PM EDT2017-05-28 23:18:43 GMT
    Source: Tucson WaterSource: Tucson Water

    A water main break closes a stretch of road on the southwest side. Tucson Water says northbound lanes on Mission road near Ajo Way will be closed while crews respond to the break. 

    A water main break closes a stretch of road on the southwest side. Tucson Water says northbound lanes on Mission road near Ajo Way will be closed while crews respond to the break. 

  • UPDATE: Two shot, one dead, at post-wedding party

    UPDATE: Two shot, one dead, at post-wedding party

    Sunday, May 28 2017 3:23 PM EDT2017-05-28 19:23:16 GMT
    Police taped off part of E 32nd Street to investigate a deadly shooting early Sunday morning (Source: TPD).Police taped off part of E 32nd Street to investigate a deadly shooting early Sunday morning (Source: TPD).

    Police responded to several reports of a shooting early Sunday morning in a neighborhood near Park Avenue and East Silverlake Road. Officers found two men shot in the 1100 block of East 32nd Street just after 1:30 a.m. on May 28, according to a release from Tucson Police Department.

    Police responded to several reports of a shooting early Sunday morning in a neighborhood near Park Avenue and East Silverlake Road. Officers found two men shot in the 1100 block of East 32nd Street just after 1:30 a.m. on May 28, according to a release from Tucson Police Department.

  • Crews halt wildfire southeast of Tucson

    Crews halt wildfire southeast of Tucson

    Sunday, May 28 2017 12:48 PM EDT2017-05-28 16:48:06 GMT
    Source: Corona De Tucson FireSource: Corona De Tucson Fire

    Crews have stopped forward progress on a wildfire burning 20 miles southeast of Tucson, according to the Tucson Interagency Dispatch Center. The Cienega fire is now at least 50 percent contained after burning 150 acres.  It broke out Saturday, May 27 near Hilton Ranch Road and Red Cloud Mine Roads.  No buildings are threatened. MOBILE USERS: Download our app on your Apple and Android devices. Copyright 2017 Tucson News Now. All rights re...

    Crews have stopped forward progress on a wildfire burning 20 miles southeast of Tucson, according to the Tucson Interagency Dispatch Center. The Cienega fire is now at least 50 percent contained after burning 150 acres.  It broke out Saturday, May 27 near Hilton Ranch Road and Red Cloud Mine Roads.  No buildings are threatened. MOBILE USERS: Download our app on your Apple and Android devices. Copyright 2017 Tucson News Now. All rights re...

Powered by Frankly