While Fred Meyer is increasing the amount of money it’s offering the 4J School District to purchase Civic Stadium, the city of Eugene is giving itself more time to come up with a private business to renovate and operate within the ballpark.
The council spent Wednesday afternoon debating its options for the stadium purchase.
“The Civic Stadium property is now contingent on other parties having sufficient funds and providing a plan to finance, renovate, operate, and maintain Civic Stadium within six months of 4J’s acceptance of the city’s offer,” said George Brown, Eugene City Councilor.
Some councilors strongly support this plan.
“I think this is our chance to save a historic structure, and that is what we should do. And there may be some risk involved, but certainly the people who built it in the first place had some risk, and anything good that’s been done involved risk,” said Betty Taylor, Eugene City Councilor.
Others did not want the city to go through with its plans to purchase the stadium.
“I move to direct the manager to immediately withdraw our proposal from the Civic Stadium property,” said George Poling, Eugene City Councilor.
So the two sides came to a compromise, eliminating the part of the offer that would require it to have renovation plans and a financial backer for the project next week. They settled on a $4.5 million offer that would give the city six months to come up with a game plan and private parties to financially support the plan.
The city of Eugene isn’t the only player changing its offer.
Fred Meyer’s upping its bid for the ballpark. If the district chooses its offer to buy the stadium, it’s now willing to pay $5.25 million as opposed to the $5 million it originally offered.
“The Fred Meyer that we would build would not look like a Fred Meyer in the area. It would be unique. It would be almost like a boutique type Fred Meyer,” said Melinda Merrill, Fred Meyer spokesperson.
The superintendent will make his recommendation to the school board on what bid he thinks should be chosen at the end of this month. The school board will then decide on what, if any, bids it will accept in mid-February.