The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches will be complete in time for the Feb. 28 opener between the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals, but not a second sooner.
Representatives of both baseball teams told the county commission Tuesday morning they’re racing to the finish, no thanks to Hurricane Matthew, which required work crews to spend two days securing the 161-acre Haverhill Road site and two more days getting it unwrapped and back in action.
Astros General Counsel Giles Kibbe and Art Fuccillo, a Nationals partner, said the teams’ 12 practice fields will be ready for their arrival in mid-February. The stadium, which is a bit behind schedule, will still be a work in progress then but will be finished by Feb. 28.
The public multipurpose fields and city park, on the south end of the site, also will be complete by then, Kibbe said.
Commissioner Shelley Vana said she’s hoping the Atlanta Braves will be impressed enough by the $148.5 million complex to also build a stadium, at John Prince Park in Lake Worth. Nearby businesses are hoping for that, she said.
Kibbe replied that he’s friends with the Braves’ executive staff. “If there’s anything we could do on that, we’d love to do it,” he said.
We’ll have a complete story this weekend.