On Tuesday night, the Hagerstown City Council officially approved a new two-year lease extension for the Hagerstown Suns to continue playing in Municipal Stadium.
The Single-A minor league team would continue to pay the city $35,000 for rent per year, but now it will be reinvested back into the stadium for improvements. The city would also take over general maintenance of the building.
“It really sets a precedent for using the funds that we get through the rent, to put it back into Municipal Stadium,” said Mayor David Gyberts.
Both team and city officials have discussed their hope of making a longer-term deal in the future.
Council member Kristin Aleshire was the lone dissenting vote. He said low attendance over the years has hurt the fan experience, and believes an indoor turf facility could be a better option than using a stadium with just a single entity benefiting from its use.
“I haven’t seen our citizens sort of rise up to that level of interest, that says ‘yes, let’s continue to limp down this road until we figure out a solution,’” Aleshire said.
The city is also responsible for remodeling the home team clubhouse and replacing the outfield wall padding before the season starts in April.