Georgia State gets closer to purchasing Turner Field


The Georgia State University Panthers have been looking to buy Turner Field from the Atlanta Braves. On Thursday, June 23, the terms of the sale were approved by the reaction board of Turner Field.

Recently, the Georgia State University Panthers expressed interest in purchasing Turner Field from the Atlanta Braves in order to open a new football stadium. The sale price for the 67-acres has been estimated to be over $100 million.

Thursday, the terms of the sale were “OK’d,” and Georgia State can now look forward to finalization in the coming weeks. Once a final agreement is reached in a few weeks the Panthers could use Turner Field for more than just football.

Once the Braves move out and relocate to SunTrust Stadium next season, the possibilities for Georgia State are endless. While it is expected that they will utilize the stadium for football, there have reportedly been plans that the university may also use the facility for things such as classroom and office space, and possibly even housing.

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As it changes hands from the Braves to the Panthers, Turner Field could be getting a slight makeover. According to Doug Richards of 11 Alive News:

"With community input, Georgia State has produced sketches that show Turner Field replacing its entire right field seating with a lean grandstand aligning alongside the gridiron of its college football field.  The remaining bulk of Turner Field could become a mixed-use project of its own, with classroom space and more.“It includes opening up the property so theres more of a plaza feel, making it truly a community asset,  with housing, restaurants and retail etc.” said Keisha Lance Bottoms, executive director of the Atlanta Fulton County Recreation Authority."

All other plans aside, what does acquiring Turner Field mean for Georgia State football? The Panthers currently play their home games at the Georgia Dome. Since the Atlanta Falcons will be moving to their brand new state-of-the-art Mercedes-Benz Stadium in 2017, it is likely that the Georgia Dome could be torn down in years to come.

Moving out of the Georgia Dome also means that the Panthers would no longer be at the mercy of the Falcons when it comes to scheduling their home games. They would also have to take into consideration the scheduling of Atlanta United FC in 2017. Clearly the Panthers need a facility that they can call their own. 

Not to mention, the Georgia Dome seats 71,228, and attendance at Georgia State games has always been sparse. In 2015, their highest attendance for a home game was 11,512. Turner Field has a capacity of 49,586 (before Georgia State adds classroom space, housing, etc.), which could help to give the Panthers more of a sense of community, or at least make attendance seem higher. 

Next: Bulldogs: Tulsa DB J.R. Reed makes the transfer

With the final closing approaching within the next few weeks the Georgia State University Panthers will finally have a stadium of their own – and more.