Board approves Ballpark Village
By Maria Hickey, KWMU
St. Louis, MO. – Ballpark Village got the final approval from the St. Louis Board of Aldermen Friday.
The plan gives Baltimore-based developer Cordish Co. $115 million in state and local tax incentives.
The six-block retail and entertainment district will go where Busch stadium once stood.
Alderwoman Bernice Jones-King was one of four members who voted against the plan. She says she wanted more time to review the deal and she questioned why downtown development is getting city help.
"Downtown can really take care of itself and we're really not allowing it to do so," she said. "There are areas in north St. Louis and areas of the city that are stricken and do not have those revenues and those revenues never come to us."
But Alderwoman Phyllis Young, the bill's lead sponsor, says the city will get no new revenue if it passes on such development. She says it was important to move the project forward.
"We always want more time, but I'm not sure we could have done anything differently," Young said. "I think the negotiations on this were very difficult on both sides, and I think the city did a very good job of getting our best deal."
The project still needs state approval.
Developers hope businesses will open their doors in July of 2009.