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Rogers Centre owner shelves plans for Toronto Blue Jays’ stadium amid COVID-19 pandemic

The Toronto Blue Jays play an MLB intrasquad baseball game in a nearly empty Rogers Centre in Toronto on Thursday, July 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Carlos Osorio

TORONTO — Rogers Communications Inc. says it was exploring the future of its Toronto stadium prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the virus has caused it to put those plans on hold.

The telecommunications company and owner of the Blue Jays baseball team says its primary focus this year is keeping staff safe and maintaining operations, and it has no update on the status of the Rogers Centre stadium.

The statement comes after the Globe and Mail reported Friday that Rogers and Brookfield Asset Management Inc., were looking to tear down the stadium as part of a larger development project.

Citing unnamed sources, the Globe says the two companies would build a new stadium half the size on the southern part of the current site and use the remaining land for residential towers, office buildings, stores and public space.

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Brookfield declined to comment on the matter.

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The Rogers Centre, formerly known as the SkyDome, opened in 1989 and seats more than 53,000.

Click to play video: 'Ottawa rejects bid to allow Blue Jays to play in Toronto'
Ottawa rejects bid to allow Blue Jays to play in Toronto

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