ATLANTA — Truist Park has gone from an empty, vacant piece of land just eight years ago, to a place people want to congregate, even when the team is 800 miles away.
Truist Park and the Battery have been home base for metro Atlanta Braves fans throughout the World Series.
The Cobb County Chamber of Commerce touts the economic advantages of the ballpark and the surrounding stores, restaurants and other businesses in the Battery, but Cobb Chamber President Sharon Mason says it brings even more than money.
“The vision was about so much more than a stadium. It was about creating the vibrant environment it is today, that we’ve seen with the World Series,” Mason said.
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Like any kid who grew up in Cobb County in the 1990s and 2000s, Christian Lee remembers Braves games with his dad.
“I would have been so happy for my dad to see this,” Lee said.
The initial vision for Truist Park, the Battery and the Braves in Cobb County started with his father, the late Cobb County Commission Chairman Tim Lee, who was one of the drivers of this dream.
“To have that sort of epicenter of the Braves nation is just something he would be smiling from ear to ear about,” Lee said.
Cobb county taxpayers are still paying millions each year in bond payments on the county’s $300 million share of the stadium.
Kennesaw State University economist J.C. Bradbury says his research shows that the economic impact isn’t matching that tax dollar investment.
“The impact is very, very small; and it is far less than what is needed to fund the stadium,” Bradbury said.
Cobb County Commission chair Lisa Cupid says this past week is proof of success, however.
“We had a vision for what this could look like. However, you have to invest in a vision to make it happen, and what we’re seeing today is the payoff of that,” Cupid said.
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