As mentioned earlier, one of the best climate-controlled views of construction is from the 7th floor elevator lobby in the A ramp. (That's Noah getting his first glimpse of the new ballpark.)
As I write this, I'm reading first word that Torii has reached a deal with the LA Angels. He'll be playing in our new ballpark only as a visitor. *Sigh*
The other day I mentioned that the Downtown Journal ran a two-page spread (View as PDF) on some ballpark details. Regular readers here already know most of what was printed, but there were a few interesting new details.
- Windows on Seventh Street and the HERC side look into (or out of) the concession stand areas. This has great potential to brighten the interior and humanize the exterior (assuming you won't be looking at some hot dog vendor's ass).
- The mysterious triangle-shaped grassy knoll will be surrounded by wooden benches, and the frosted glass panel will "likely tell the story of Twins baseball." Do we agree that we're interested in a complete history of the franchise, and not just the Minnesota portion? I mean, Walter Johnson? Goose Goslin? Sam Rice? Heinie Manush? 1924 -- one of the greatest World Series wins ever? OK, there were some, ahem, lean decades. But, really...
- The plaza is slated to contain locust trees -- that is if they don't get cut out of the budget.
- Tinted windows will help reduce solar heat gain. This probably works toward LEED certification, but I have no idea how this is coming. Building "green" isn't just a good idea. It's an essential social responsibility. Let's hope this has remained a priority.
I meant to include this shot the other day. It's the new LRT bridge being built next to the remaining half of the Fifth Street bridge. The new half is almost TWICE the width of the portion torn down. And the other end runs right into a HERC administration building! (Click to see the view from nearly the same spot about 85 years ago.)
- Steam from HERC will play a role in heating some areas.
- The street lamp designs seen on the model and animation are just placeholders. Nothing has been decided there.
- A cistern is part of the design. It will capture rain water which will be later used to irrigate the field.
- Heating the seats again gets a mention. This continues to be on the radar, but I've heard nothing optimistic about this from people in the know. They may just be blowing smoke on this one.
- The canopy may have solar panels on top. Really great idea.
- Wood for the circulation ramp enclosures will be "reclaimed from local sources." In other words, don't throw away that old fence wood! The Twins may need it!
Then there's this gem:
"Scores will be posted on a champagne-colored scoreboard." You mean, like, baseball scores? Really?? Wow.
The Ballpark Authority web site has added a section dedicated to construction photos. Natalie Hunter, the photographer, got to walk around in the mud and get some close-ups of dirt and trucks and footings and such.
"You talk about the magic, the aura, but what really makes a stadium is the fans. Concrete doesn't talk back to you. Chairs don't talk back to you. It's the people who are there, day in, day out, that makes the place magic."
– Bernie Williams
Explore the Site
Here are 50 images chosen randomly from the 3042 found on this site. Click the image to be taken to the original post. A new list is created every 10 minutes.
I love these upper neighborhoods.
The wall of brands at General Mills headquarters in Golden Valley (Source: RP)
The shade of the canopy gives way to a brief shaft of light. It would do the same again a short while later when the sun passed through that tiny open sliver between the View and Terrace levels.
Louver samples on display.
Photo by Jeff Ewer
Panels arriving on flatbed trailers in front of the Twins' dugout.
A new address for the Admin building
That's Jacque Jones looking up in awe at the Great Greenness.
Ballpark magic: Infield materializes (click to enlarge)
What can you see from up there? Some say not much.
"Hey, Ma, it says here we go in at gate 34. Must be all the way around on the other side!" Seriously, though, this is a really inspired idea.
Skinny dugouts at TF
Such promise. (Click to enlarge.)
This is as close as I could get to a pedestrian-eye view of Seventh Street (looking west away from downtown). It's inviting, not imposing, and remarkably dignified.
Larry DiVito, mowing
The view from the Penn Ave entrance to 394 (and all the way into town! Click to enlarge)
Detail on the main gate, with Target Field sign
Discovered on the upper concourse!
Denard Span ready, in a swoop of sunlight.
Winter approaches. But one day baseballs will fly where now there are cranes.
Lunch break at the top spot. (Grandstand)
At the base of the B ramp, the foundation for the center field stands.
Love the LC!
I noticed this detail while taking the previous picture. I figure that it must be the VIP entrance from the surface parking lot. I don't think there is any parking inside the ballpark, so this entrance will likely be for suite-dwellers and other VIPs, though I can't say for sure whether players will enter here.
Here's one big problem with a retractable roof: completely terrible seating in left. These scant few seats would have been tucked under the track. No sunshine, no open concourse, it was a terribly kludgy idea. With some hindsight, it's very clear that adding a retractable roof on this small site would have required compromises which would have just been too extensive to tolerate. Without it, the design was free to grow into something much more memorable.