|Bob Farren sitting at a press conference to address the community about the addition of the Virginia Cavalry FC to the North American Soccer League. -Times-Mirror Staff/ Andrew Scharbel|
Bob Farren has returned as CEO and president of VIP Sports and Entertainment, which hopes to bring minor league baseball to Loudoun County at a new field being developed at One Loudoun.
Farren was briefly replaced by Mark Stavish, an investor and board member.
Farren said he has returned to his position to resume work on construction of Edelman Financial Field.
"Some investors were wondering why it was taking so long," he said.
Farren now plans to create an advisory group and expand the board of managers, as well as increase the frequency of communications.
He also said he is welcome to suggestions on how to make the project better.
"I don't want anybody thinking I'm making these decisions all by myself," said Farren.
Farren stepped down on Nov. 27 amid frustration with delays with the ballpark and the franchise.
"We have been close and then hit hiccups," he said. "We've had to make adjustments as far as financing, politics and cooperation from the league."
Farren wants to build a bigger ballpark, but the league wanted him to downsize to ensure that revenue would support the franchise.
Farren said initial plans were ready to go with the bigger ballpark, but the plan is now to phase the construction of the park to demonstrate progress.
In order for VIP to meet design criteria, the baseball stadium will have about 4,000 seats.
Unlike many stadium projects that have been funded with public money, VIP is funding the stadium through private investment. That has proved challenging. But Farren believes the potential to have good return on investment is strongly supported.
County Supervisor Shawn Williams is optimistic. "I’m looking forward to having baseball in Loudoun County as soon as possible,'” Supervisor Williams said. “It looks like the Hounds are making progress.”
The ballpark would be the home of the Loudoun Hounds baseball team and Virginia Cavalry FC soccer team.
Initially the ballpark was planned at the Kincora Development at Route 28 and Route 7. Decisions were made in 2012 to relocate the ballpark to One Loudoun at Route 7 and Loudoun County Parkway.
The Atlantic League of Professional Baseball dropped the Hounds from its 2014 schedule late last year after it was clear the stadium would not be finished on time.
Plans are in place to have the stadium ready by late February or early March of 2015, just in time for opening day, according to Farren.
"People are recognizing that they need to move forward to make 2015 happen," he said.