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PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) – The ball is officially rolling on the new McCoy Stadium feasibility study.
The state released the Request for Proposals (RFP) on Friday, soliciting plans from firms with experience designing baseball stadiums who want to take a crack at planning the future of McCoy Stadium.
The expected RFP comes days after a joint announcement from the city of Pawtucket, the state of Rhode Island and the PawSox that the three would commission a public feasibility study on the future of McCoy Stadium, signaling a chance that the PawSox may stay there.
“It’s home,” said longtime PawSox fan Joseph Siravo, who we met at Friday’s game. He’s been coming to McCoy Stadium for 40 years. “It’s a landmark.”
Siravo’s view has been the attitude of many fans ever since the late team owner Jim Skeffington proposed building the team a new waterfront stadium in Providence.
Now, the ownership team is back to considering staying at McCoy, though it has not said the team will remain at the stadium past its current lease date of the end of 2020. The new study will be a big part of making that decision, as the new firm is asked in the RFP to analyze cost and feasibility of staying at McCoy, along with the economic impact to the city of Pawtucket.
The RFP says qualifying firms will have designed at least two baseball stadiums. The firm will review the conditions of the stadium including lights, seats, traffic and parking, and will have a fairly long leash when it comes to a possible new design.
That includes possibly expanding the footprint of the stadium. The RFP says “the proposed improvements will consider the utilization of adjacent publicly owned land parcels,” which could refer to the city-owned Pariseau Field next door.
The study itself is expected to cost about $100,000, split between the city, state and the PawSox. Once the group contracts with a firm, they’ll be expected to submit plans within 12 weeks.
The final report will be released about six weeks after that, the RFP indicates. The report will be released to the public, unlike a private study previously commissioned by the PawSox.