O’s to decline Camden Yards extension, join governor in pushing to revamp stadium district

The Baltimore Orioles and Maryland Gov. Wes Moore announced a joint commitment to what they described as a “multi-year public-private partnership” to revitalize the Camden Yards sports complex.

The statement from the team and the state’s new governor came on Wednesday, the deadline for the Orioles to exercise a one-time five-year extension to their lease at Camden Yards. According to multiple reports, the team had no plans to exercise that option. The Orioles’ lease decision was first reported by The Baltimore Sun.

Without an extension, the lease expires at the end of this year, but the team and the Maryland Stadium Authority can negotiate further. Wednesday’s joint release appeared to be an attempt to calm nerves in Baltimore about the team’s future.

“I look forward to continuing to work with Governor Moore, his administration and the Maryland Stadium Authority to provide Baltimore with the modern, sustainable and electrifying sports and entertainment destination the state of Maryland deserves,” said John Angelos, CEO of Orioles.

“We appreciate Governor Moore’s vision and dedication as we seize this tremendous opportunity to redefine the paradigm of what a Major League Baseball venue is and thereby revitalize downtown Baltimore. It is my hope and expectation that, along with Governor Moore and the new members and as the new MSA Board Chairman, we can once again realize Camden Yards’ full potential to serve as a catalyst for Baltimore’s second renaissance.”

Republican Larry Hogan, the state’s former governor, signed a bill last year increasing bond approval for M&T Bank Stadium, home of the Baltimore Ravens, and Camden Yards. The measure allowed borrowing of up to $600 million for each stadium.

“When Camden Yards opened 30 years ago, the Baltimore Orioles revolutionized baseball and set the bar for the fan experience,” Moore, a Democrat, said Wednesday. “We share the Orioles organization’s commitment to ensuring the team plays at a world-class facility at Camden Yards for decades to come and look forward to advancing our public-private partnership.”

Angelos recently reconfirmed that the Orioles would remain in Baltimore, though he slammed a reporter who asked for more clarity on the future of the team’s ownership. Angelos was sued last year by his brother Lou, who alleged that John Angelos took control of the Orioles at his expense.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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