A groundbreaking ceremony in early May marked the official start to the construction of a new, 41,000-seat stadium for the Washington Nationals.

After more than 30-year absence, major league baseball returned to the DC area in 2005. The construction of a new ballpark signals a new era for baseball in the nation’s capital. The park is also slated to be the cornerstone of a revitalization plan for the Anacostia River Waterfront project.

The DC Sports and Entertainment Commission web site provides great coverage of the plans and progress of the stadium construction. The site features a live webcam of the construction project, a photo gallery, renderings of the ballpark design, news updates, and detailed facts and figures.

This new facility – which “strives to be the most environmentally friendly MFL ballpark ever” – is expected to cost over $600 million. Financing for the project will largely come from the issuance of municipal bonds.

The District of Columbia Chief Financial Office web site features a section devoted to “Baseball in the District”, including the financing of the new Washington Nationals Ballpark. The site includes details on the Financing and Revenue Act for the stadium and a fiscal impact statement on the baseball lease agreement.