Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Perplexing TRWD Land Swap Deal For Fort Worth LaGrave Baseball Park

A couple weeks ago, whilst I was in modern America, Arizona to be precise, Braig Prickley Facebook messaged me with a link which led me to the TRWD PRESS RELEASE you see partially screen capped here.

I read the press release and thought to myself what fresh ridiculousness is this nonsense.

I then replied to Mr. Prickley telling him something along the line of what with me currently being in modern America I just don't have the energy or desire to much care about fresh nonsense from back in backwards America.

And then I got back to Texas and soon found myself reading the Fort Worth Star-Telegram's "news" article about this fresh nonsense, with the article titled Deal to reopen Fort Worth Cats’ LaGrave Field full of dreams, but is there money?

Reading the Star-Telegram's question about money was not the question I was asking when I read about this "deal".

Before we get to looking at this deal let's look at what Mr. Prickley had to say after I replied to his message...

Yeah, looks like slimy Jim Lane got his way.  When they won the election, he said his TOP PRIORITY was getting minor league baseball back at Lagrave Field.

The slimy Jim Lane to which Prickley refers is one of the TRWD board members.

There is no mention made of it in the Star-Telegram article, but wasn't it Jim Lane who finagled an earlier "deal" regarding the land around LaGrave Field? A deal which had the TRWD spending multiple millions of dollars to rescue a bankrupt friend of Jim Lane. A friend somehow associated with LaGrave Field and its demise, if my memory is serving me correctly.

And then after the TRWD paid for that land, part of that land became the world's first drive-in movie theater of the 21st century.

Any of this ringing a bell with anyone? No mention is made in the Star-Telegram article about the previous TRWD property purchasing shenanigans in the LaGrave Field area.

This Star-Telegram article about LaGrave Field tells us...

The Fort Worth-based water district, teaming with the federal government to split the Trinity and create the new island, also got $1.3 million in the trade plus 8.1 acres including the stadium.

The water district is teamed with the federal government to split the Trinity River and create a new island? Does the federal government know they have been teamed with the TRWD to split a river and create an imaginary island?

And then this about the land that was swapped so the TRWD could take over LaGrave Field...

In exchange, Houston-based Panther Acquisition Partners will get 15.3 acres along what is now a levee, giving the group a total of 26 acres on what will become Panther Island when the river is split.

What is this new nonsense about splitting the river?

Am I understanding correctly? The land which the TRWD swapped for the land including LaGrave Field is currently underneath 15.3 acres of Trinity River levees, which will be removed if the Trinity River Vision ever becomes something someone can see, with that land under the levees then part of the imaginary island.

And then there is this...

Right now, we’ve only heard lofty promises. If they come through, the new Panther Island development across the Trinity River from downtown will be anchored by a boutique ballpark and events facility built around the legendary 92-year-old ballfield. Here’s how iffy this deal is: It requires $4 million at signing from a charity foundation that does not even have a board of directors yet but is already collecting money.

The imaginary island development will be anchored by a boutique ballpark? And an events facility? Built around a legendary ballfield?

You reading this somewhere in modern America, have you ever heard of Fort Worth's legendary ballfield?

The deal required $4 million from a charity?

Why does Fort Worth never seem to do things the way towns wearing their BIG CITY pants get things done?

If you are reading this and have not seen Fort Worth's LaGrave Field, back when it re-opened, after reading what seemed likely to be hyperbolic exaggeration in the Star-Telegram about this newly re-opened facility, I ventured to the future imaginary island and took some photos, and then webpaged what I saw in Fort Worth's LaGrave Field.

During my multiple visits to the Phoenix metro zone this year, and last, I have seen multiple baseball parks, some beautiful big complexes, complete with a hotel and other amenities, such as the Chicago Cubs Wrigley Field at the north end of Dobson Road, in Mesa. Or my most recent last day in Arizona when Miss Daisy's driver drove us by the spring training ballpark for the California A's. Any of these Cactus League ballparks would be a worthy ballpark model for a big city like Fort Worth.

And why is the TRWD, as in Tarrant Regional Water District involving itself in something like trying to re-open a defunct ballpark?


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