Nashville Sounds opening day at First Tennessee Park
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Nashville, Tenn --- (Sky Arnold) The Nashville Sounds opened their new ballpark Friday night to a packed crowd.
The $47 million First Tennessee Park opened after more than a decade of work trying to get a new stadium for the minor league team.
The Nashville Sounds originally proposed a new ballpark on the river back in 2003.
The thermal plant site proposal fell apart four years later.
Mayor Karl Dean returned with a new proposal in 2013.
Dean's idea was to build the park in Sulphur Dell where previous teams played decades ago just north of downtown.
"This project will make a big difference for this part of our city and you can already see that all around us," said Dean.
Under Dean's plan Metro would pay for the ballpark through sales taxes created by the stadium, property taxes from new development and rent from the Sounds.
Martha Davenport is among the fans who like the stadium's connection to history.
"I'm old enough to have been to the old Sulphur Dell when I was a girl and I was just so glad they were gonna build down here."
The development around the stadium was another big selling point.
Mayor Dean says the stadium has lead to 25 major developments in the area.
"This community for a long time has been left out and with the addition of the stadium it's bringing jobs to the community," said Metro Council Member Jacobia Dowell.