ATLANTA -- The Braves have gained the necessary government approval to move forward with their plans to construct a new stadium and a surrounding mixed-use development in Cobb County before the start of the 2017 season.
With a 4-1 vote on Tuesday night, the Cobb County Commission approved a Memorandum of Understanding that will call for approximately $300 million in public funds to be used to construct the $672 million stadium that will be located near the northwest intersection of Interstates 75 and 285. The Braves will invest approximately $372 million to cover upfront costs and annual payments.
"This is a significant day in the history of this franchise," Braves president John Schuerholz said. "We are grateful to the citizens of Cobb County and the leadership in the community who have worked tirelessly to bring this to fruition. I truly believe that this partnership will yield what will become one of the finest baseball and entertainment facilities in the country."
Earlier this month, the Braves announced they would leave downtown Atlanta when their Turner Field lease expires at the end of the 2016 season. The open-air stadium will be surrounded by the mixed-use development that will be aimed to make the area a year-round destination for baseball fans and consumers.
The development will include residential options and a $400 million entertainment district that will be funded solely by the Braves and private partners. Plans for this district call for the construction of restaurants, shops and at least one hotel.
Along with being responsible for all operating costs of the stadium, the Braves will team with Cobb County to cover the stadium's capital maintenance expenses. Construction of the stadium will begin next year. It will support more than 5,200 jobs with a total payroll of more than $235 million.
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com.