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The Virginian-Pilot(Norfolk, VA.)

The images show a stadium with a gleaming brick facade and a grassy picnic area where fans can watch a minor league baseball game.

The city now has a better idea of what the home of the Virginia Beach Neptunes would entail: Virginia Beach Professional Baseball LLC included more details of the project in applications for two permits and a change of zoning that go before the Planning Commission this week.

In addition to the 5,000-seat stadium, which will sit on a 125-acre lot off Princess Anne Road near the Sports­plex, the company plans to build a 60,000-square-foot office building that would provide space for wellness training and sports therapy, potentially through Sentara Healthcare, according to city documents.

Plans also include 13 lighted fields for baseball and softball tournaments and recreational use, and a roughly 1,200-space parking lot.

The stadium also will have room for 2,000 spectators in the grassy area outside the outfield. The Neptunes, part of the Atlantic League, would play about 70 home games a year, city documents said. A secondary tenant, a team in a summer wooden-bat league, would play there as well. Tidewater Community College's Virginia Beach campus will use the stadium as it introduces junior college baseball to its athletic program.

The project area includes wetlands, which would remain untouched, according to city documents. The developer plans to create a park with a picnic area and walking trails adjacent to the wetlands.

Virginia Beach Professional Baseball promises to finance the stadium through private bonds. It anticipates breaking ground over the next few months and beginning play next year.


Gabriella Souza, 757-222-5117, gabriella.souza@pilotonline.com

June 10, 2014

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