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MLB’s Mariners extend Safeco Field lease

Major League Baseball team the Seattle Mariners has signed a 25-year extension to its lease at Safeco Field.

The new deal takes effect after the ballpark’s original 20-year lease expires at the end of 2018 and includes the option of two further three-year terms, through which the Mariners could play at the stadium until 2049.

The MLB.com website reported that the Mariners would contribute about $650m (€558m) to the Washington State Major League Baseball Stadium Public Facilities District (PFD) and the ballpark. This includes $55m for 25 years’ rent, $120m to a new capital expenditure fund for ballpark upgrades and improvements, 1.5 to two per cent of ticket sales revenue and around $175m generated from taxes collected on parking and tickets for events at the stadium.

The team will also cover maintenance costs, which are estimated at $250m over the duration of the lease.

John Stanton, chairman and managing partner of the Mariners, said: “We want this ballpark to be our home for the next 100 years. Safeco Field should be to Seattle and to the Mariners what Wrigley Field is to Chicago and the Cubs and Fenway Park is to Boston and the Red Sox.

"We sincerely appreciate our partnership with the PFD, who share our vision to ensure that our fans will continue to enjoy Major League Baseball in a state-of-the-art facility for decades to come."

The team has played at Safeco Field since the stadium opened in 1999.