Braves set to close on Cobb stadium site

The Atlanta Braves will close today on the purchase of land for their planned new stadium and mixed-use development in Cobb County, team officials said.

The Braves will pay about $34.2 million — $600,000 per acre — for a 57.1-acre parcel of undeveloped property near Cumberland Mall. The team has held an option since early last fall to buy the land from Bethesda, Md.-based real-estate titan B.F. Saul Co.

The Braves plan to build the stadium on the back 15 acres of the property and, if the project goes as they hope, use the rest for a complex of shops, restaurants, bars, offices and residences that would lead from Cobb Parkway to the ballpark gates. Both the stadium and development are scheduled to open in 2017.

To put the price of the land in a baseball context: It is roughly equivalent to two years’ salary for Brian McCann, the former Braves All-Star catcher who left the team this winter to sign a five-year, $17 million-per-year contract with the New York Yankees.

Or to look at it another way: The 57 acres cost the Braves about the same amount that the Falcons and Georgia World Congress Center Authority agreed to pay two churches for five acres of downtown property for the planned new Falcons stadium.

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