The Alameda County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously on Monday to sell its half ownership of the 155-acre Coliseum complex to the Oakland A’s baseball team for $85 million.
The county and the city of Oakland have jointly owned the Coliseum complex since 1964, but county leaders decided in 2015 that they wanted to sell their share in the property so they could get out of the sports business and focus on their core mission of providing social services.
The county has been in talks with the city since 2015 about selling its share to the city, but the talks broke down in February. The Board of Supervisors voted on April 23 to authorize negotiations with the A’s about selling its share to the team, but the city filed suit on Sept. 27 to try to stop the county from doing so.
But last month, the Oakland City Council voted to drop the lawsuit and enter into exclusive negotiations with the A’s to sell the city’s half of the Coliseum to the team.
The A’s, who currently play at the aging baseball stadium at the Coliseum site, are pursuing a plan to build a new baseball-only stadium at the Howard Terminal waterfront site north of Jack London Square that would be ready for the 2023 season.
The baseball team simultaneously wants to redevelop the existing Coliseum complex into a site that could include a large park, housing and businesses.
Alameda County Supervisor Nate Miley said there will be a 190-day due diligence period before the deal is finalized. After the vote, A’s President Dave Kaval said, “This is truly an historic day. We’ve worked all year to get to this day.”
Kaval said the A’s are in talks with the city of Oakland about either buying the city’s share of the Coliseum property or entering into a joint venture with the city for managing the property. He said the A’s are eager to also finalize their plans to build a stadium at the Howard Terminal site and “get a shovel in the ground” there.