Councilor Austin shows site for new Barons stadium

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - By Sherea Harris

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - We know where Birmingham will build its field of dreams for the Barons.

Birmingham Councilor Johnathan Austin showed FOX6 News the exact location of the new ballpark. It will be in what's called the Parkside District, across from Railroad Park on the 14th Street side.

Austin says the ballpark will stretch from the train tracks to 2nd Avenue South and it will neighbor I-65 for about 4 blocks.

If all goes as planned, construction will start within the first of the year. Mayor William Bell expects it to be complete in 2012.

So will you go to the games and support the Barons in downtown Birmingham? Barons' fans in Hoover were asked if they will support the Barons in Birmingham. They said they will attend the games and they are not concerned about the perception of downtown Birmingham safety concerns.

Pam  MacDougal said, "I'm sure that whatever agreement is being put in place is going to include details for Birmingham police officers. So it'll be a safe as going to Regions Park."

Paul Calligan said, "I've gone to a few of the games in Hoover. I enjoyed them but I've always thought it would make a whole of sense to be back at home. It will put Birmingham back on the map as a sports town."

The Barons' owner, Don Logan, says that if things go forward with the ballpark, there will be plenty of security inside and outside of the stadium.
He says he wants to create a family environment and make sure people feel safe and comfortable coming to the stadium.

Hoover's Mayor Tony Petelos is not happy with how this all came to be. He felt sure the Barons would stay in Hoover.

Petelos says he had to find out through the media about the letter of intent that was signed Thursday night between the Mayor Bell and the Barons.

Petelos says he believed the Barons were staying at Regions Park because the Barons just sent out notifications to fans encouraging them to buy season passes for next year. Adding, "I'm not aware of an issues that the Barons were disappointed with, they haven't notified me as mayor."  "I thought we had a good working relationship and for me to hear this from a news reporter was very disappointing to me."

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