October 31st, 2006
Jeff Bell , Business First
Franklin County officials have landed another $12 million in corporate sponsorship commitments for the minor league baseball park they plan to build in the Arena District.
Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. and Dispatch Printing Co. each committed $6 million for sponsorships at the proposed Huntington Park, according to a press release from the county. In addition, Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman said the city will invest $9.3 million for utilities, roads and other infrastructure improvements at the ballpark site.
The 10,000-seat, county-owned ballpark is slated for the northwest corner of Neil Avenue and Nationwide Boulevard. Franklin County Commissioners recently pushed back the expected opening date for the $55 million ballpark to 2009.
Huntington Park will house the county-owned Columbus Clippers of the International League and replace Cooper Stadium, the team’s 15,000-seat home on Columbus’ west side.
Nationwide will pay $6 million for naming rights to the new ballpark’s concourse. Its development subsidiary, Nationwide Realty Investors, is also donating its services, estimated at more than $1 million, to act as the county’s owner’s representative during the design and construction phases. The Dispatch will pay $6 million for naming rights to the ballpark’s scoreboard.
Earlier this year, Huntington Bancshares Inc. locked up naming rights to the ballpark through a $12 million sponsorship deal with Stadium Inc., the county entity that will manage the ballpark.