Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Save the Diamond Breakthrough?

Ed. Note: Can't say whether this will turn out to be a real breakthrough, or just another level of discordancy. But I'm glad somebody outside of City Hall has continued to work on a plan that makes sense for the neighborhood The Diamond is a part of now, and for the rest of the city, as well.

Owned by Richmond's citizens, The Diamond is far too great of an asset to sweep away without such a plan. The Flying Squirrels made a mistake when they backed Mayor Dwight Jones' rejected plan to build a ballpark, etc., in Shockoe Bottom. Now the management of the Squirrels obviously regrets it. Still, no one should hold that against them too much. Their arms were being twisted. The push for Baseball in the Bottom twisted a lot of arms before it crashed and burned.

Now the Squirrels want to stay on the Boulevard. That seems to be what baseball fans prefer. And, for what it's worth I support that concept ... for now. As far as how important minor league baseball really is to the whole community, well, maybe that's what ought to be considered -- maybe even voted upon -- before we commit to spending a lot of money on it down the road. Anyway, I got this info in the form of a press release, by way of email today.

Media Announcement
Nov. 24, 2015, For Immediate Release 
Richmond Group Announces Plan To Transform The Diamond and Spark Economic Development In Surrounding North Boulevard Area (Richmond, Va.)

Calling itself “The Save The Diamond Committee,” a local group of citizens, architects, and developers has created a proposal – Live. Work. Play Ball. A New Vision for North Boulevard – to transform the existing Diamond baseball stadium into a 21st century minor-league ballpark. The proposal also includes a multi-use development plan for the contiguous 50 +/- acres that can provide needed significant tax revenue to the City of Richmond.

Committee representatives – Harry H. Warner, Jr, committee chairman, Randy Holmes of GlavĂ© & Holmes, and Steve Terrill of AECOM – will present the plans and ideas to the media and the public on Wed., Dec. 2, 2015, 2 p.m., at the Richmond Public Library auditorium, 101 E. Franklin St. 
Contact: Harry H. Warner, Jr., (804) 357-8157; NewBoulevardVision@Outlook.com

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