Thursday, February 28, 2002 Volume 67, Issue 103



Enron Field renamed, for now

By Kristin Buchanan
Daily Cougar Staff

The ballpark formerly known as Enron Field just got a new name.

Kevin Harwerth/The Daily Cougar

Enron Field's name will change to Astros Field as soon as a bankruptcy court approves a buyout deal between Enron and the Astros.

The beloved arena housing Houston's baseball team no longer bears the name of the company involved in the largest bankruptcy in
U.S. history. Until the team finds a new sponsor, the stadium will be Astros Field.

"It's time to move forward," Astros owner Drayton McLane Jr. said. "I am very happy that we have been able to reach this settlement and
put this issue behind us."

In 1999, Enron signed a 30-year, $100 million contract to have its name put on the stadium, tickets and even napkins. 

"Because the Enron name blankets the stadium, thousands of people who have been adversely affected by the Enron collapse are
being reminded on a daily basis of the continuing tragedy," lawyers for the Astros said in court papers.

Enron has paid up through August, but the Astros were adamant that they not be associated with any scandals surrounding the energy
trading corporation.

McLane came to an agreement Wednesday with Enron creditors to pay the company $2.1 million to remove its name from the venue,
effective immediately.

Before the agreement becomes official, the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York must review and
approve terms of the settlement. The hearing was scheduled Wednesday in New York.

Naming rights negotiations could be settled before the season starts April 2, McLane said.

About seven national and international companies are in the running to be the ballpark's next sponsor. The Astros are declining to
name any of these companies.

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