Brian Soukup, director of field operations, mows the field at Smith’s Ballpark in Salt Lake City on April 8, 2020. The ballpark has yet to generate significant economic development in the area.

Laura Seitz, Deseret News

Thirty years ago this May, Deedee Corradini, the mayor of Salt Lake City at the time, told me her vision for the site on West Temple and 1300 South, where she planned a modern minor league baseball stadium.

“I envision 10 years from now the stadium will define the south end of downtown,” she said. “If we can get commercial retail in around there, restaurants will start spinning off.”

You don’t need any special expertise to know that didn’t happen — not in 10 years or in 30. A few high-density housing projects have recently sprung up north of the stadium. Lucky 13, a bar and grill, is down the street, as is a Lowe’s and a Walmart. These don’t really qualify as economic development, nor do they have much to do with baseball. They seem more like the natural amenities tied to a growing city in the nation’s fastest growing state.

The surroundings for the site, which had already been home to a stadium called Derks Field for decades, doesn’t look much different than it did then.

But now, the triple-A baseball team that Corradini fought so hard to get for her new stadium is moving to South Jordan, to a stadium the Larry H. Miller Company will build in the rapidly growing Daybreak community. The future of what now is known as Smith’s Ballpark is uncertain. 

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Source:: Deseret News – Sports News

      

Salt Lake ballpark didn’t bring economic development | Opinion

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