Hartford officials want answers on Yard Goats stadium progress - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Hartford officials want answers on Yard Goats stadium progress

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(WFSB photo) (WFSB photo)
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -

Three days after the deadline for the Hartford Yard Goats baseball stadium to be completed, construction continues.

A question mark remains on the calendar when it comes to a date to play ball at the $65 million Dunkin' Donuts Park in the downtown north section of the city.

Opening day at the park was supposed to be May 31. More than 400 people are waiting to work their new stadium jobs. The team itself has been play home away from home games at Dodd Stadium in Norwich.

Patience all around is wearing thin.

"We have no ability to make the construction go faster and we have no idea when the ballpark will be done," said Josh Solomon, Hartford Yard Goats owner.

While the stadium is more than 90 percent complete, the city has concerns the funding might not be there to get it to 100 percent.

City officials are calling for a meeting with the developer's insurance company, just to double check that the funding will be there to make sure the ballpark opens sometime this summer.

"We want to make sure that the project moves forward as quickly as possible, that the financing is in place and that city taxpayers are not further on the hook," said Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin.

The stadium authority chair said it'll likely be late June or early July before the first pitch is thrown.

The developer, city and team were not ready to give a firm date earlier this week when it became clear that their deadline would not be met. They said they would take a few days to outline construction and set a new calendar mark to meet.

Until it's completely finished, the Centerplan construction company is being penalized $15,000 a day.

Under that contract, the money won't be coming from the taxpayers and it won't be coming from the Yard Goats, but will be coming from the developers.

City leaders said the developer has spent about $7 to $9 million per month and have 350 construction workers on the payroll.

The insurance company is supposed to cover any additional costs up to $49 million, and most likely the overruns won't reach that figure.

It is unclear how much money they will need, and DoNo's project manager Jason Rudnick only said "We have a ballpark to build, we plan on finishing it, I don't have much comment on what happened here today."

Crews have been working 24/7 in recent weeks and they will be working through June.

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