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Detroit mayor supports tearing down Tiger Stadium

DETROIT -- Tiger Stadium will be demolished to make way for
homes and stores under a plan that will save parts of the historic
baseball venue.

A portion of the field will be kept as a Little League diamond
along with part of the stadium.

"I think it's something everybody will enjoy and love,"
Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick said Friday.

The decision to demolish the stadium follows years of intense
efforts to find a developer who would refurbish it or convert it to
other uses. It has been largely vacant since the Detroit Tigers
moved out in 1999 in favor of the new downtown Comerica Park.

"Nobody was interested in the site with a stadium on it,"
Kilpatrick said following a dedication ceremony for
church-sponsored housing development project.

The project will include 150 to 300 homes and retail space.

The cost of demolition will be anywhere from $2 million to $6
million, said Peter Zeiler, an aide to Jackson. It will be offset
by the value of the stadium as scrap and as a treasure chest of
sports memorabilia, which could include seats and signs.

He said the city hopes to find a salvage contractor familiar
with marketing sports memorabilia that can begin offering pieces of
the stadium to the public by October.

"The possibility of something happening at that site is very
exciting," said City Councilman Ken Cockrel Jr., who said he would
reserve judgment on the plan until the council receives financial
details.
The Tigers began playing at the site near downtown late in the
19th century and moved into Tiger Stadium in 1912.