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Luring The Drillers To Jenks

The Tulsa Drillers may be moving from Tulsa to Jenks. The News On 6 first reported Monday that the baseball team may move from the Tulsa County Fairgrounds in Tulsa to Jenks as part of a billion dollar development. News On 6 anchor Craig Day reports more on the plan, including comments from the Mayors of both cities, and the developer of that huge project.

The Tulsa Drillers have signed a nonbinding agreement to move to the proposed River District planned for the west bank of the Arkansas River. That letter of intent would create a 7,000 seat ballpark within the 300 acre attraction. Jenks Mayor Vic Vreeland is excited about the possibility.

"We sit with our fingers crossed, but the developer seems to be real positive about it," Jenks Mayor Vic Vreeland said.

One of the developers is Lynn Mitchell. He says the billion dollar project includes a mix of retail, restaurants, office space, condominiums and more.

"A lot of attractions, a fashion district a town square plaza. What we're trying to create is an urban village," project developer Lynn Mitchell said.

Discussions are still ongoing, but Mitchell says the Drillers would be a big part of that urban village.

"As we try to incorporate shopping, dining, living, office, civic activities, the Drillers just make a natural fit, especially for a development of this size," said Mitchell.

"You know with a ball team coming you can play 70 home games, so 70 nights a year you're going to have that and once you get them here, if you have something else for them to do, they're going to come back," Vreeland said.

Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor hopes those fans come to downtown Tulsa to watch ballgames instead of Jenks.

"Really the Drillers need to be downtown,” said Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor. “I think that's the right location for their fan base and I'm confident that's where they will end up."

Chuck Lamson, the ball club's president, says nothing is final and that the team hasn't ruled out other locations, including downtown Tulsa.

"I'm confident the fans will let them know that they want the Drillers, the Tulsa Drillers, in Tulsa," Taylor said.

"This is for Tulsa as a region, and at the end of the day it's a business decision for the Drillers,” said Mitchell. “It's a business decision for us and we'll see what comes out of it."

No move would happen until at least the 2010 season, and the team will still be known as the Tulsa Drillers.

Watch the video: Drillers New Home Plate Could Be In Jenks

Related Stories:

8/20/2007 - The Jenks Drillers?

8/21/2007 Fans React To Possible Drillers Move

8/21/2007 Previous Plans To Move The Drillers Have All Failed
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