A state grant of up to $3 million has been awarded to Cooperstown, NY, helping in the financing of upcoming renovations to historic Doubleday Field.
Located near the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, Doubleday Field is used for a variety of events, including the Hall of Fame Classic. The historic ballpark is approaching its 100th anniversary in 2020, and a nearly $6 million project is taking shape to upgrade the facility in time for that milestone.
Funding sources for the project are being pulled together, and one of the most significant was announced on Thursday. New York governor Andrew Cuomo revealed that a grant of up to $3 million was being awarded to Cooperstown, and will be used to help cover a project that includes new bleachers, playing surface upgrades, access improvements, and more. More from the Observer-Dispatch:
Various officials praised the assistance for the project that will cost approximately $5.8 million.
“As we welcome thousands of visitors to our community this weekend, we are thrilled to receive this award for improvements to our historic and iconic Doubleday Field,” Cooperstown Mayor Ellen Tillapaugh said in the release. It will enable us to begin the necessary upgrades, which, without assistance, could not have been undertaken by our small Village.”
Improvements to Doubleday Field are expected to include replacing bleachers, upgrading pedestrian and disability access and repairing the field and adding green space. Two new multi-purpose buildings will also be constructed, the release said. The project is expected to be completed by summer 2020.
“Doubleday Field is a national treasure, and this project will bring the stadium into the 21st century while ensuring it stands strong in Cooperstown for generations to come,” Cuomo said in a press release. “We’re seeing incredible growth in the tourism industry and, with these renovations, the new upgraded Doubleday Field will host more events, attract more visitors, and generate an even greater economic impact for the Mohawk Valley.”
The timing of the announcement is notable, given that the 2018 Hall of Fame induction ceremony is scheduled for Sunday. Once completed, the Doubleday Field upgrades are expected to allow the ballpark to host more events while preserving some of its historic characteristics. The first game at Doubleday Field took place in September 1920, and the ballpark was expanded over time into the facility that it is today.
RELATED STORIES: Grant Secured for Doubleday Field Upgrades