Charlotte residents might not see baseball uptown after all.
The longer the legal fight goes on, the more the Charlotte Knights have their doubts they'll be able to build a ballpark in Third Ward. Construction costs keep going up. The team planned to spend $42 million on the project. Now, they're looking at $62 million.
Knights General Manager Dan Rajkowski said, "We hope that it doesn't price this project to a point to where it doesn't make financial sense for us."
Jerry Reese, a local lawyer fighting against the ballpark, said he plans to keep swinging.
Reese said, "The Minor League Baseball park is clearly a step backwards. We need to be going toward not only Major League Baseball, but a facility which has dome-type characteristics."
Rajkowski said if the Knights win the court cases launched by Reese and build the stadium, the team could sue Reese to pay the extra millions.
"We have investigated it, and I would say we're comfortable in saying there should be some damages back to the team, back to the county, for this frivolous litigation," he said.
Both sides were back in court in Union County on Wednesday. The North Carolina Court of Appeals heard two of Reese's four appeals. Reese argued he deserves a full trial to argue his view -- that the government agencies behind the baseball land swap owed it to taxpayers to get top dollar for the land, not just trade it.
The government's lawyers said the government's job is to do what is in the public's best interest and that includes economic development.
The judges have not yet ruled.
The Court of Appeals usually hears arguments in Raleigh. The judges go on the road a few times each year, usually to each of the state's seven law schools. It never held court in Union County before Wednesday.