Durham Bulls Athletic Park is the home of the Triple-A Durham Bulls, which was made famous in the movie Bull Durham. The ballpark opened in 1995 when the Durham Bulls were a Single-A affiliate of the Atlanta Braves. The owner of the ballpark, the City of Durham, contributed $16.1 Million to the cost of the project, and the Durham Bulls contributed $2.4 Million.
When Durham was awarded one of two Triple-A expansion franchises in 1997, Durham Bulls Athletic Park was expanded in 1998 to 10,000 seats and other areas of the ballpark were modified and expanded. The City of Durham contributed $1.5 Million to the cost of the expansion, and the Durham Bulls contributed $3 Million.
In 2013, the City and the Durham Bulls executed an extension of their contractual arrangement, which also anticipated a renovation and updating of the ballpark. This project grew to involve every aspect of the ballpark including a dramatic expansion of concessions facilities, a new state-of-the-art video board, sound system, and in-stadium CCTV system distributed throughout the ballpark, and a reconstruction of the ballpark’s streetscape to execute a vision of a more urban, pedestrian-friendly ballpark. The City contributed $12 Million to the total $22 Million cost, and the Durham Bulls contributed the balance. These renovations were concluded between the end of the Durham Bulls’ 2013 baseball season in September and opening day the first week of April 2014.
In his prior capacity as vice president and general counsel of Capitol Broadcasting Company, Mr. Hill negotiated the stadium lease and development agreement with the City of Durham that led to the construction of Durham Bulls Athletic Park in 1995 and its expansion for Triple-A baseball commencing in 1998. Mr. Hill also was directly responsible for all aspects of the initial design and construction and for the expansion. In recent years, the Durham Bulls engaged D3 Development to assist the Bulls in its negotiation with the City of Durham to extend the stadium lease as well as enter into a public-private partnership development agreement for the renovation project that was completed in 2014. In addition, D3 Development served as fee developer for the renovation project and in that capacity supervised the design team and the general contractor.