Baseball fans in Brevard County will not be seeing a new stadium in downtown Melbourne for the county’s minor league team.
The city decided a new stadium for the Manatees would not it would not be a good fit for the area.
The team was looking to possibly build a new stadium on a 3.5-acre lot along New Haven Avenue, which is closer to shops and the county’s tourism.
“We have a stadium here in Brevard County. Let’s use that. That’s what it’s here for,” said Melbourne Mayor Kathy Meehan.
The mayor said a new stadium isn’t part of the city’s comprehensive plan and would create a parking issue near the vacant lot.
Business owners in the area said they would like to see more retail and more residents living downtown, and is something the city said they’ve already received conceptual plans for.
“You need more residents, the rooftops which they’re including and more retail – especially on this side of the railroad tracks,” said Angela LoPresti whose family has owned a building across from the vacant lot for more than 30 years.
The Washington Nationals have one more season in Brevard County before packing up and moving their spring training operations south to West Palm Beach.
For now, the Manatees are staying put, which many fans said is where they want them to be.
Manatees fan Frank Webbe drives to the games from his home in Palm Bay. He said he’s OK with the team staying where they’re at.
“I am not disappointed. I mean, I would have been happy if it was there. I don’t see any reason to move when you have a good place right here,” said Webbe.
News 13 did reach out to the Brevard County Manatees, but the team said they do not have a comment on the issue.