SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Preparations for the demolition of Shreveport‘s Fair Grounds Field are set to get underway in less than two weeks.

Despite years of efforts to save the baseball stadium on the Louisiana State Fair Grounds, the city is moving forward with plans to raze the former home of the Shreveport Swamp Dragons and Shreveport Captains. The facility has become run down, no longer meets building and sanitation codes, and is not handicap-accessible. It is also undersized for the city’s capacity and infested with bats.

The City of Shreveport announced in April that a contract was pending on the demolition of the iconic baseball stadium. Now, the city says those contracts are signed and Denham Springs-based Perault’s Nuisance Wildlife Control will begin the process of removing the bats on August 22.

That work is expected to take about two weeks. Once the bats are removed and relocated, work will begin on demolition. That should happen by Sept. 6, if not sooner. Under the contract, the work of tearing down the stadium must be completed within 90 days, weather permitting.

The contracts for the bat removal and demolition will add up to $472,806, according to the city.

Opened in 1986, Fair Grounds Fields was once considered one of the top ballparks in minor league baseball. It was home to the Shreveport Captains, a minor league professional baseball team in the Texas League, and a “farm team” for the San Francisco Giants for more than two decades.

After the original Captains were sold to a new owner and moved to Laredo, Texas in 2000, other teams tried but it just wasn’t the same. Attendance fell off. The gates were locked in 2011, and Fair Grounds Field fell further into disrepair until it was ultimately condemned.

The city and SPAR, which manages the stadium property, have received calls from citizens asking how they can claim items from the stadium, such as seats. The city says they can reach out to demolition contractor Henderson Construction at 318-861-0512.

No official proposals for the future of the property have been announced, although the city says it has been exploring options for development and working on a number of improvements in the area that are expected to raise property values, including applying for a federal grant to improve the nearby medical corridor.