LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Cost estimates for a major renovation of Dodger Stadium are coming in much higher than expected, so executives from Fox Group are contemplating tearing down the 36-year-old ballpark and building a new one.

``We've gotten to the point where we have the initial cost estimates, and the costs are substantial in terms of the renovation plan we're looking at,'' Bob Graziano, president and chief executive officer of the Dodgers, said in Monday's Los Angeles Business Journal.

``I'm not exactly sure how close it is to the cost of a new stadium, but it's getting closer to those numbers,'' he said.

Graziano would not disclose the renovation estimate, but industry experts said it is likely well above the $118 million that Walt Disney Co. recently paid to renovate Edison Field in Anaheim, where the Angels play. A new ballpark could be built for slightly more than $200 million, experts said.

Fox Group bought the Dodgers in March for $311 million.

To build new luxury boxes, retail stores and restaurants, the stadium's concourses would have to be widened. But because the stadium is built into a hill in Elysian Park, that widening would require expensive excavation.

Graziano said no timetable has been set for making a decision, but that major changes to the stadium have been pushed back to the end of the 1999 season. They had originally been scheduled to begin at the end of this season.