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Will Arlington finally get to play ball with Texas Rangers’ development plan?

🕐 2 min read

Development around the Texas Rangers’ ballpark has been one of the city’s goals ever since plans for the project was first proposed.

Now those big league dreams may come to fruition as the city is considering an economic development agreement with the ball club for a mixed-use development project.

At Tuesday’s Arlington City Council meeting, members will consider a $200 million mixed-use economic development project that would include approximately 100,000 square feet of restaurant, retail and entertainment venues near Globe Life Park in Arlington.

The proposed agreement also includes plans to develop a hotel with a minimum of 300 rooms and 35,000 square feet of meeting and convention space. If the council approves the proposed economic development incentive agreement with the Texas Rangers, the city would provide the Texas Rangers performance-based incentives valued at $50 million for the project. The incentives include retaining income from the following sources: hotel occupancy tax, property tax, sales tax and mixed beverage tax for 30 years from the City and hotel occupancy tax and sales tax from the state for 10 years.

The hotel/convention facility construction would begin by the end of 2016.

Also at Tuesday’s meeting, the council will consider adopting a Phase 1 Capital Improvement Plan for the Arlington Convention Center Facilities. According to the staff report, Project A will consist of the $200 million Texas Rangers-related project, while Project B will consist of a hotel with 750 rooms and 68,000 square feet of convention and event space.

“Adoption of a Phase I Capital Improvement Plan for these facilities demonstrates the city’s intent to add to the complement of first-rate meeting facilities available to visitors,” according to the staff report on the resolution.

Arlington has been trying to develop the area around the ballpark since it was approved by voters in 1991. In 2006, then-Rangers owner Tom Hicks planned a $600 million development called Glorypark, but that plan was scuttled in the recession.  

Hicks eventually sold the team in bankruptcy in 2010. 

The Texas Rangers are co-owned by Dallas energy executive Ray Davis and Bob R. Simpson, owner of MorningStar Oil & Gas in Fort Worth and previous co-founder and CEO of XTO Energy.

For more on the project:

www.arlington-tx.gov/citycouncil/agendas/

For more on Arlington’s development plans:

www.fortworthbusiness.com/news/dreaming-big-arlington-s-ambitious-plans-for-economic-development/article_41cd5394-9b9f-11e5-b7b4-afac8232f44d.html

Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

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