Crack! That’s the sound of the Hillsboro Hops knocking out another park — or at least that’s the plan.
The minor league baseball team, which is the newly promoted High-A level affiliate to the Arizona Diamondbacks, celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2023. But fans have something to cheer about long before the home opener on Tuesday, April 11.
Together with the city of Hillsboro, the Hops announced they will construct a new stadium on the northwest side of the Gordon Faber Recreation Complex. The 6,000-seat structure should be ready in time for the team’s 2025 season and will offer a year-round entertainment venue on the western edge of the Portland metro area.
Civic leaders say the site will be able to host 300 events per year, including concerts.
You may be wondering — why build a new structure instead of renovating the existing Ron Tonkin Field? Well, that was the original course of action, but the preliminary design and analysis showed it would be more cost effective to start from scratch, even though it will triple the price tag to $120 million.
So let’s talk moneyball. The Hops will source $75 million in private financing and assume full operational control over the new ballpark. Hillsboro will contribute a smaller sum ($18 million) through its transient lodging tax and retain exclusive ownership and oversight of Ron Tonkin Field. About $25 million will be requested from the state.
The organization’s ultimate aim is to meet the MLB’s updated facility standards for High-A teams, which means improved player health and wellness, more stringent security, and an elevated fan experience. Hops President and General Manager K.L. Wombacher called it a “game-changer for our region.”