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Pasco closes on Wiregrass Ranch property


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WESLEY CHAPEL -

Pasco County is now the owner of 138 acres of prime real estate in Wiregrass Ranch.

The county closed on the property Tuesday after six months of negotiations with the Porter family, who own Wiregrass Ranch.

The Porters donated the land, valued at $8.7 million, to the county on the condition it builds a sports complex or regional park on the site, which is just north of the future Raymond James Financial corporate park.

The county’s legal staff will now resume negotiations with Blue Marble Strategic, the Tampa-based vendor selected to develop the sports complex. Blue Marble plans a 20-field baseball complex with a 5,000-seat stadium and onsite, dormitory-style housing for traveling ball teams.

The baseball park, which has a $34 million estimated price tag, would be privately financed, but with an $11 million contribution from the county.

The family had also donated land to Pasco Hernando Community College for its Porter Campus, which is scheduled to open Jan. 1.

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