SunTrust Park `bricks and sticks' to cost $462 million

Overall project budget unchanged

The cost of steel, concrete, labor, plumbing, electrical and most of the other items that go into building SunTrust Park will cost $462 million — the price of hard construction costs negotiated between the Atlanta Braves and its construction manager, American Builders 2017.

Cobb Commissioners unveiled the so-called "Guaranteed Maximum Price," or GMP, during a Tuesday morning meeting at which they went over agenda items for tonight's commission meeting.

The overall budget for the new baseball stadium remains the same — $622 million, with the team's option to add $50 million to the budget if they wish.

The GMP is a not-to-exceed price for the labor and construction materials, or the cost of "bricks and sticks." It is meant to insulate the owner from cost overruns because any construction expenses beyond the $462 million will be covered by the construction management firm, unless the team or county cause the additional expenses by asking for changes.

The GMP does not cover so-called "soft costs," such as land acquisition, or fees for attorneys, architects and construction management; nor does it include landscaping, parking and utilities. Those additional costs are the major difference between the $462 million GMP, and the overall project budget.

The Braves and construction manager American Builders 2017 have been negotiating the GMP for nearly a year.

"Parking, landscaping, anything they want to do beyond (the GMP) is on" the Braves," commissioner JoAnn Birrell said.

The stadium development agreement between the Braves and Cobb requires the county to approve of the GMP in a resolution. Cobb's project manager, Heery International, reviewed the GMP and recommends approval.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution asked for the GMP documents reviewed by Heery as part of its review, but Commission Chairman Tim Lee's office told the newspaper that it would have to submit a request under the Georgia Open Records Act, which allows the county three days to respond.

It appears the Braves intend on spending the extra $50 million and increase the stadium project budget to $672 million. A recent filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission by Braves' parent company Liberty Media placed the stadium cost at $672 million.

Braves officials have said they would spend the extra money if they determined more parking was required on the site. The team announced in December its intention to purchase the Guaranteed Parts site near the stadium, and said it would most likely be used for parking.

In addition to the GMP, Hankerson provided an update on stadium construction Tuesday morning:

  • There is an average of 250-280 workers on the site daily.
  • $375 million in contracts have been awarded so far, with 68 percent going to Cobb County firms.
  • There has been no lost time due to injuries.

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