Marshall University has acquired the site of its proposed new ballpark from a local development authority, a major step in the push to open the facility in 2021.
Under a transaction announced Wednesday by Marshall director of athletics Mike Hamrick, the university will acquire the Flint Group pigments property in Huntington from the Huntington Municipal Development Authority (HMDA). This comes after HMDA members decided last month to sell the site to the university for $468,000.
Marshall, which is aiming to open the ballpark by March 2021, also announced Wednesday that it was launching Herd Rises, a $22 million fundraising effort to make the facility a reality. The university’s goal is to begin construction in March.
“This is the final step to move forward with an initiative that is long overdue,” Hamrick said in a press statement. “I want to thank Huntington mayor Steve Williams, Marshall president Dr. Jerry Gilbert and HMDA for their support along the way. Now the hard part starts. I challenge all of our loyal Marshall fans to step up and help us bring this dream to fruition.”
“I am elated that this day has come,” Marshall president Dr. Jerry Gilbert said in a press statement. “The promise of a baseball stadium for Marshall University is becoming reality. Thank you to Mayor Steve Williams and the City of Huntington, and to Mike Hamrick and all our loyal donors who will make this possible. Now that we’ve completed this crucial first step and have the land, let’s build a baseball stadium!”
The HMDA’s purchase of the Flint property was announced in February, with Wednesday’s announcement marking the university’s acquisition of the land from the authority.
“This is another step in an exciting path that will lead us to hearing the crack of a bat in the middle of town,” Huntington mayor Steve Williams said in a press statement. “Marshall University is the heartbeat of our city, and I am personally thrilled to be in a position to see that the promise made 50 years ago to Coach Jack Cook comes to fruition. Marshall and the City of Huntington are one team.”
Marshall’s baseball program will play its home games during the 2020 season at the Kennedy Center before moving into the new facility. It played the bulk of its games there in 2019, with select contests played at Appalachian Power Park, the home of the West Virginia Power (Low A; Sally League) in nearby Charleston.
Rendering courtesy Big Green Scholarship Foundation.
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