May 24, 2018 / 2:28 AM / 3 months ago

Seattle Mariners agree to new 25-year lease for Safeco Field

The Seattle Mariners and the Washington State Major League Baseball Stadium Public Facilities District (PFD) have come to terms on a new 25-year lease for the team at Safeco Field, which includes a long-term plan to spend up to $385 million on capital improvements.

Aug 10, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; An overall view of Safeco Field during the fifth inning of a game between the Baltimore Orioles and Seattle Mariners. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The agreement, which takes effect next year, also allows for a pair of three-year options that could push the terms through 2049. The team’s current lease ends this year.

“We want this ballpark to be our home for the next 100 years. Safeco Field should be to Seattle and to the Mariners what Wrigley Field is to Chicago and the Cubs and Fenway Park is to Boston and the Red Sox,” Mariners chairman and managing partner John Stanton said in a statement on Wednesday.

“We sincerely appreciate our partnership with the PFD, who share our vision to ensure that our fans will continue to enjoy Major League Baseball in a state-of-the-art facility for decades to come,” Stanton added.

Terms of the agreement require the Mariners to meet an “applicable standard” of operating, maintaining and improving Safeco Field in a first-class manner measured against the top one-third of comparable MLB ballparks. Since 1999, Safeco Field has maintained that high standard in regular surveys conducted by the PFD, according to the statement released by the Mariners.

Both sides in the lease agree that an additional $160 million, above and beyond what the Mariners must spend to operate and maintain the stadium, could be needed for required upgrades beyond infrastructure improvements.

Safeco Field opened in 1999.

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