The Texas Rangers and City of Arlington are planning the next phase of Globe Life Park, with high-rise buildings and a multipurpose playing field among the possibilities in what could be a unique reconfiguration.
The Rangers will play the 2019 season at Globe Life Park before moving into the adjacent Globe Life Field–an upcoming retractable-roof ballpark that is currently under construction. A retractable-roof ballpark was pitched to provide more shelter from the Texas heat than the open-air Globe Life Park, which originally opened in 1994. Throughout the planning process for the new ballpark, however, all signs have pointed to Globe Life Park being repurposed rather than demolished.
At least one future use–and one that is expected to lead to changes within the ballpark–was unveiled earlier this week, when it was announced that an XFL squad will begin playing there in early 2020. Football, soccer, and other events figure to be part of the future of Globe Life Park, but the scope of the redevelopment initiative that the Rangers and Arlington are exploring would go well beyond that and possibly include two high-rise buildings on opposite ends of the ballpark. More details should emerge down the road, but a conversion project would build off of certain features of Globe Life Park–including its distinct facade (shown above) and existing office buildings in the outfield. More from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
[Arlington mayor Jeff] Williams said he envisions two towers being constructed on opposite sides of the stadium. In theory, both towers would “grow” out of the sides of the stadium on Randol Mill Road.
“The real piece of this is when we have a master plan to come out and shows we have the ability in the concourses to come out with high rise office space,” Williams said. ”We don’t know how high because it would depend how many businesses we can get signed up. So we would have an office tower on one side, and a high rise condo coming out of the other corner. It would be dual towers.
“In the meantime, all of these people who are currently using the office space here (at Globe Life Park) want to stay here. This is a place and time to be creative. And we still have the outdoor component, and the opportunity when the XFL is not playing games, that if people are living and working here, you could bring in temporary park furniture (on the field). You could bring in tree wells. We could make this the Central Park of this complex; that is the vision.”
Rangers COO Neil Leibman said he hopes the club and Arlington can build “a city within a city” around Globe Life Park, Globe Life Field, AT&T Stadium and Texas Live!
Numerous ballparks have been repurposed for another sport after their baseball days have ended, with the conversion of Atlanta’s former Turner Field to a college football stadium being the most recent example in the majors. A broader redevelopment that includes office and living space would be much more unique, however. Indianapolis’s Bush Stadium stands as an example of where portions of the ballpark were later included in an apartment building, but the potential conversion of Globe Life Park would likely be to a much larger scale.
In the case of Globe Life Park, the Rangers and Arlington could look to tap into a few advantages. The structure itself is still relatively new, and it could receive plenty of use given its proximity to surrounding amenities.
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