YBOR CITY, Fla. (WFLA) — The City of Tampa may be getting serious about keeping the Rays in the Tampa area.
City officials confirmed with 8 On Your Side that they are looking into options to relocate the team across the bay.
“I think it would give it a good taste. maybe clean up some of the bars down there bringing some other businesses,” Dr. Thomas Scaglione, who was born and raised in Ybor said.
8 On Your Side has learned officials are eyeing the former Kforce headquarters along East Palm Avenue in Ybor.
Currently, the site has a massive building surrounded by a fenced-in lot.
City officials confirmed that Tampa Mayor Jane Castor met with Rays officials earlier this week to discuss the site.
City and county leaders are looking into whether a plan is feasible and economically beneficial for the city.
Dr. Scaglione is a member of the adjacent Centro Asturiano club and believes the plan is a big win for the city, and for the club.
“It’s closer to the strip, that’s the first thing, and the other thing is the benefit for the club here because they could have activities and just parking alone would make money for them,” Dr. Scaglione said.
“Let them come, bring some money,” Mark Perez, another member of Centro Asturiano who supports the idea said.
It’s not yet clear how big the footprint would be.
A city spokesperson said they have not committed to anything except trying to do what it can to keep the Rays in the Tampa Bay area, preferably Tampa.
“Tampa Sports Authority, county and city are doing due diligence to analyze options and potentially workable financing options. Taxpayers are definitely not going to open up their checkbooks to bankroll a stadium,” a city spokesperson emailed.
On Thursday evening, Tampa City Council members will discuss developing the nearby Gas Worx development, which is right near the proposed stadium site.