WASHINGTON - They have names like the Sugar Land Skeeters, the Bridgeport Bluefish, the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs, and by 2014, the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball also will include the Loudoun Hounds — the ninth team to join the independent league.
The Hounds team is moving ahead with plans to build a new 10,000-capacity stadium at the Intersection of Route 7 and the Loudoun County Parkway in Ashburn, in an area known as the One Loudoun project. The planned community covers 358 acres and will include single family homes, townhouses, a hotel, movie theater and retail shops.
"Shifting the ballpark over to One Loudoun we believe will allow us to have an opening pitch in 2014," says Hounds spokesman David D'Onofrio.
He says an earlier deal that would have put the stadium near the terminus of the new Silver Line near Route 28 and Route 7 wasn't moving fast enough.
"The stadium remains at 5,500 fixed seats with an overall capacity of 10,000 folks," he says.
The Hounds website says the stadium will offer WiFi, luxury boxes and party rental suites among other features.
The proposal still needs approval from the Loudoun County Supervisors, who have expressed support for the team and stadium in the past.
The Hounds also are negotiating with the North American Soccer league to bring a team to play in the stadium as well.
The Atlantic League is not affiliated with Major League Baseball and hires its players from a variety of sources including some ex-major leaguers trying to make a comeback.
(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)