Some additional details have been released on the new ballpark for the Kentucky Wildcats, including construction schedule and cost.
On Monday, the University of Kentucky announced that the construction of the facility will begin in February 2017. The ballpark is expected to be completed in 18-20 months, allowing it to open for the 2019 season.
The anticipated cost of the facility is $49. As noted on Friday, the ballpark will feature 2,400 fixed seats, plus berm seating that will bring the total capacity to 4,000. Furthermore, seating could added beyond the outfield seating, allowing the ballpark to host 7,000 spectators for larger events. As with most new college baseball facilities, it will also offer enhanced premium seating options and state-of-the-start training and administrative space for the program.
The board of trustees authorized the project on Friday. At the this point, the university has not finalized a name for the facility.
“This is another step toward making the vision we have for our facilities a reality,” athletic director Mitch Barnhart said in statement from the university. “We are excited to begin construction on the baseball stadium we’ve long worked to build and even more excited to give our program an incredible new facility as we pursue our goal of competing at the highest level in the strongest conference in America.”
“We’re extremely appreciative of the continued commitment of President Capilouto, Mitch Barnhart, the University of Kentucky, and our athletics department to our program,” UK coach Nick Mingione said in the same statement. “The new facility will be beneficial in a multitude of ways and we will continue to bring the right type of students into our family to play in this marvelous facility. There’s a great deal of work to be done between now and the day our new stadium opens for our baseball program to reach the heights we all want it to, but we’re certainly excited about what the future holds.”
After the new ballpark debuts, Cliff Hagan Stadium–the current baseball facility–will be demolished to clear space for a new tennis facility. Cliff Hagan Stadium has been home to the Wildcats since 1969.