The Tampa Bay Rays officially told Mayor Rick Kriseman that they won’t be looking for a new stadium site outside of St. Petersburg, for now.
“The Rays hereby notify the City that the Rays will not attempt to negotiate “New Agreements”… or prepare a “Termination Agreement,” said a letter from the team sent to Kriseman on Monday and made public Tuesday.
A January 2016 Memorandum of Understanding gave the Rays until Dec. 31, 2018 to look around Hillsborough and Pinellas counties for other ballpark locations. The team scrapped a proposed site in Ybor City last month, saying a framework for a deal from Hillsborough County lacked enough specific detail to move forward.
The Rays lease at Tropicana Field runs through 2027. The city of St. Petersburg, has drawn up two redevelopment plans — one with a stadium and one without a stadium.
The Florida Department of Transportation has chosen the firm that will provide construction engineering and inspection services for a new Howard Frankland Bridge.
Atkins, formerly Tampa-based PBS&J and now a business unit of SNC-Lavalin, is the prime consultant in a contract valued at $36 million.
“Replacing a 58-year-old bridge with a modernized, multimodal one will help reduce congestion and ease travel, so this coastal region can continue to thrive in the future,” George Nash, CEO, Atkins North America, said in a news release.
The new bridge, which will cost about $814 million, will accommodate four general purpose lanes, four express lanes (two in each direction) and a shared-use path for bicyclists and pedestrians. The two northbound express lanes will support future rail transit.
Before construction begins, Atkins will provide construction oversight for interim improvements that will bring additional lanes from the north end of the bridge toward downtown Tampa, the release said.