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Atlanta Braves release designs for new stadium to open in 2017

This artist rendering provided by the Atlanta Braves shows the team's proposed new ballpark and mixed-use development design in Cobb County. The stadium is scheduled to open in 2017, replacing Turner Field. (AP Photo/Atlanta Braves)
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This artist rendering provided by the Atlanta Braves shows the team's proposed new ballpark and mixed-use development design in Cobb County. The stadium is scheduled to open in 2017, replacing Turner Field. (AP Photo/Atlanta Braves)

Click the image above to see photos of the new park.

In 2017, the Braves will abandon Turner Field to take up residence in a new stadium about a dozen miles up the road. On Wednesday, the team released the first renderings of what the new stadium could look like at homeofthebraves.com.

“This is a very early look at how our vision is shaping up and, even though we are still months away from final plans and drawings, we are very pleased with the progress,” John Schuerholz, president of the Atlanta Braves, said in a statement.  “The renderings represent the sense of place we intend to create 365 days a year in addition to a world-class ballpark.”

Capacity of the stadium will be roughly 41,000; Turner Field's current capacity is about 50,000. As you can see from the drawing above, there'll be a body of water (our suggested name: Lake Chipper) out past right-centerfield.

Here's another angle on the plaza depicted on the left side of the picture above:

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New Braves stadium.

This is what the press release is referencing in a very clear shot at the locale around the Braves' current home: "Shopping, dining, living, office and entertainment space, as well as a boutique hotel, will create a play, work, stay environment complete with green space and a water feature. The development, combined with an intimate, state-of-the-art ballpark, will keep this destination bustling year round." Emphasis added for non-Atlantans who may not be aware that the area immediately around Turner Field is virtually deserted at any time other than the 81 game days a year ... and also during those game days, except for a few hours before and after the first pitch.

Here's another angle, this depicting another plaza:

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New Braves stadium.

The brick-and-backlighting architectural style virtually screams Atlanta, though the profound lack of bumper-to-bumper SUV traffic does rob this piece of some authenticity.

The stadium is slated to cost more than $600 million, while the mixed-use development around it will run about $400 million. (At the moment.) The stadium will be ready for Opening Day 2017, while the surrounding development will be fully complete by 2019.

As for Turner Field itself, which is owned by the city of Atlanta, the future is murky. City officials have said in the past that the stadium could be demolished to make room for development. But last week, Georgia State proposed converting Turner Field into a football stadium for the university's use. Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said that plan is one of four the city has received for Turner Field's usage.

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Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at jay.busbee@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter.

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