BusinessTampa enterprise chambers endorse Rays’ split-city Montreal plan

Tampa enterprise chambers endorse Rays’ split-city Montreal plan


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Three outstanding Tampa enterprise teams have stepped ahead to help the Tampa Bay Rays’ proposal to separate upcoming seasons between stadiums in Tampa Bay and Montreal.

The Tampa Bay Chamber, South Tampa Chamber of Commerce and Tampa Bay LGBT Chamber mentioned in a joint announcement Thursday that they supported the concept of a brand new out of doors ballpark “within the area” that might host the Rays for a part of every season — in addition to full Tampa Bay Rowdies seasons — describing it as “a viable idea to make sure that baseball stays and thrives on this group for years to return.”

“Tampa Bay’s wealthy historical past has been and stays to be influenced by the sport of baseball,” the teams said. “The Chambers acknowledge this connection and can proceed to help efforts to keep up this wealthy heritage.”

All three organizations are primarily based in Tampa, though the LGBT Chamber represents companies throughout seven native counties, together with Pinellas.

Tampa Bay Chamber Bob Rohrlack mentioned the teams requested different native chambers and enterprise teams to signal onto the endorsement, however some nonetheless wished extra particulars about how the plan would work. The chambers moved forward with the endorsement anyway in an effort to get it out whereas baseball’s homeowners are assembly this week, simply so Main League Baseball and homeowners knew the Rays’ plan had help from the native enterprise group.

“I believe it simply reveals that we see the Rays as a regional asset and a key commerce driver that all of us wish to be working collectively to maintain within the area,” Rohrlack mentioned.

It’s not the primary time Tampa Bay enterprise leaders have joined forces to attempt to hold the workforce within the area. In 2018, a bunch known as the Rays 100 converged to drum up help for a brand new stadium in Tampa, doubtlessly in Ybor Metropolis. That group’s efforts drew help from 4 Hillsborough chambers of commerce, together with the South Tampa Chamber.

“Once they zeroed in on Ybor the final time, we modified our place from, ‘Keep in Tampa Bay’ to ‘We promote Ybor,’ after which once they stepped again from that on the time, we mentioned, ‘Okay, we simply need you to remain in Tampa Bay,’” Rohrlack mentioned. “Regardless of the place they’re positioned, it impacts all of Tampa Bay.”

Associated: The Rays, the mayor and Montreal: St. Petersburg’s stadium drama, defined

Talking at a current luncheon for the Tiger Bay Membership, an area civic group, workforce president Brian Auld reiterated {that a} new stadium and cut up season with Montreal have been Tampa Bay’s greatest probability at holding a workforce within the area.

Recently, speak of a brand new stadium has centered on property owned by veterinary entrepreneur and Ybor Metropolis actual property investor Darryl Shaw, together with the previous headquarters of staffing {and professional} companies agency Kforce. Metropolis leaders have expressed optimism such a plan might work, even approaching the state about monetary help.

Associated: Romano: The Rays’ flirtation with Montreal might turn into a real romance this week

Throughout the bay, nearer to Tropicana Subject, St. Petersburg enterprise leaders, together with St. Petersburg Space Chamber of Commerce president and CEO Chris Steinocher, in Might penned a letter to Mayor Rick Kriseman urging town to proceed talks with the Rays on a plan to maintain the workforce within the metropolis.

Comply with tendencies affecting the native economic system

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“So as to give attention to ahead progress, we really feel assured that town and county ought to proceed to pursue discussions and actions to maintain our hometown workforce in St. Pete,” the leaders wrote. “That is the place they belong.”

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