A Look at the Return on Investment
In late 2002 the Cardinals, the City of St. Louis, the State of Missouri and St. Louis County reached an agreement on the financing of a new ballpark in downtown St. Louis. In an era when most sports facilities were built with a vast majority of public subsidies, the Cardinals deal was unusual because it was privately financed and involved so little public money.
While the Cardinals covered nearly 90 percent of the costs of the entire project with private funds, the City provided relief from a local admissions tax on tickets, while the state helped with public infrastructure costs to clear and prepare the site for development.
With ten years of actual results now in, it is clear that the tax revenue produced by the new ballpark to the City and State have exceeded expectations. The Cardinals and their affiliates have paid over $317 million in sales, income, real estate and other taxes to the City and State from 2006 to 2015. The estimated direct and indirect economic impact of the Cardinals' ten regular seasons from 2006 to 2015 totaled over $3.2 billion in output for the St. Louis region according to the St. Louis Regional Chamber.
The St. Louis Cardinals employment has more than doubled since the new ballpark and Ballpark Village were first proposed (the team has had a 124% increase in employment since 2000, growing from 1,059 employees in 2000 to 2,370 employees in 2016). More than 1,700 permanent new jobs have been created as part of the first phase of Ballpark Village. The total employment at Busch Stadium has grown by 33% since the new ballpark opened. When you include the jobs created with the development of Ballpark Village, employment has increased by 123% in the Ballpark/Ballpark Village area of downtown St. Louis (increasing to 4,223 jobs in 2016 from 1,893 jobs in 2000).