In Huntington, WV, local officials continue to explore the idea of making a new Marshall University ballpark a major component in a larger redevelopment plan.
There have been discussions off and on over the years about building a new Marshall baseball facility, and the latest effort centers around redeveloping Huntington’s Highlawn neighborhood. The neighborhood is situated between Marshall’s campus, downtown Huntington and the Ohio river, and consists of several industrial sites–including an ACF Industries rail car plant.
Should the effort move forward, the area would be targeted for the construction of a mixed-use development. The new Marshall baseball facility would be one of the main projects in that development, and it would be surrounded by a slate of amenities that includes a hotel and conference center. More from WV News:
Now that a plan has been developed and the potential of the area pointed out, [developer Sean] Garrigan said the next step is to find developers and businesses interested in helping bring the plan to life.
A key feature of the plan calls for construction of a long longed-for Marshall University baseball field. Tom Bell, executive director of the HMDA, has said the ball field would likely be developed privately, with the Herd baseball team as a tenant. The plan envisions a hotel and conference center overlooking the Marshall ball field.
The Highlawn plan calls for re-establishing a street grid between 20th and 27th streets, from 3rd Avenue to the riverfront, and connecting the zone to the Paul Ambrose Trail for Health (PATH) System.
“The idea,” said Margaret Mary Layne, “is to create a mix-used development that blends seamlessly with the Highlawn neighborhood and the Marshall campus.” Layne, president of Layne Consulting Inc., a Huntington firm, has been assisting the city with its redevelopment efforts.
Marshall traditionally uses several different facilities over the course of a season for baseball home games. That includes the Kennedy Center, Linda K. Epling Stadium in Beckley, and Appalachian Power Park, home of the West Virginia Power (Low A; Sally League).
RELATED STORIES: Marshall Continues Pursuit of New Ballpark; Marshall Ballpark Talks Taking Shape; Huntington mayor: We’re pursuing new ballpark again; Huntington ballpark funding shifts to private sector; New Marshall U ballpark closer to reality