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Clay County leader sheds light on Royals’ stadium decision

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — One Clay County leader says the Kansas City Royals are considering building their new ballpark in the Crossroads, not the East Village.

The news comes after the Kansas City Royals and Chiefs came out with a joint statement Friday, committing to remaining in Jackson County as long as voters approve an extension of the 3/8th-cent sales tax in an April election.

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Around 5 p.m. that evening, Clay County Commissioner Jason Withington weighed in on X, formerly Twitter.

“Royals call both Clay County and NKC this morning to let us know they’ve put all the chips in on the KC Star building,” part of his post read.

Withington was willing to speak with FOX4 Wednesday.

“They had decided that there was a sizable offer from the city of Kansas City that they couldn’t ignore,” Withington said of the Royals. “So they were going to put all their attention on the city of Kansas City and Jackson County.”

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On Jan. 3, the owner of the former Kansas City Star Press Pavilion, Tony Privitera, showed FOX4 a video of a new Royals stadium. It wouldn’t go on the site he owns, but east of his building and actually east of Oak Street.

One person who’d try to fight that plan if it comes true is John Pryor, the owner of Madison Flitch, a wood store in the Crossroads.

“We just simply do not know what the exact footprint of the so called ‘Crossroads’ location is,” Pryor said in an interview with FOX4 Wednesday. “As business owners, we really need to know that, so we can respond accordingly.”

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Pryor’s family owns the building Madison Flitch is located in at 16th and Locust. So if the Royals stadium actually went east of the KC Star’s former press pavilion, and not on it or west of it, Pryor said his family wouldn’t support it.

“That plan has the ballpark right over my building,” he continued, talking about Privitera’s video. “I have never been talked to once about it, so that’s where I have to come out and say, ‘Hey, just so you know, we’re not selling… for that plan… for sure.'”

The Royals won’t comment publicly on Pryor or Withington’s remarks. The city did not return FOX4’s call and email Wednesday.

“I kind of feel like they didn’t tell us the truth when they told us that the Star building wasn’t a viable location,” Withington said of the Royals.

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“I mean they told us that several times. And then here we are, and they have a new favorite location, and it’s neither North Kansas City or the East Village.”

On Monday, Jackson County’s legislature approved ballot language for the April vote — as long as the Chiefs and the Royals give the county terms sheets by Jan. 20, according to legislator Jalen Anderson.

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