Tomorrow morning the media (including yours truly) will get an introduction to, and tour of, the ballpark site. I suspect that all the TV stations will be there, so you'll be able to see some snippets on the nightly news. But I'll have pictures and report here all the really interesting stuff that they don't have time for!
Here are a couple more pictures from the last few days...
Luckily, there was no car parked in this particular spot, which is surprisingly far away from Ford Centre and Fifth Street. From the drawings I would have expected it to be much farther to the northeast. I could not find the right field marker, but I think it would have been somewhere in a small grassy area behind the Rapid Park office trailer (not pictured).
John pointed out in a comment to my last post that the small yellow dot which is visible in the pink blob above "H.P." is the actual location -- within one quarter of an inch! -- of the exact location of the plate (presumably the pointed corner). I should add that Dave St. Peter told me that the actual playing surface will be somewhat (but not very much) lower than the parking surface.
John also pointed out that I was mistaken in my reading of some of the markings. The word "fence" is painted where the construction fencing will go, and not the outfield fence. Also, what looked like backstop markings to me were actually something else.
This is my official "before" panorama of the site. The entire area which is visible here will be utterly transformed over the next three years (click for the full-size version).
I took this one late this afternoon. The southwest end of the lot was no longer available for parking, and cones had appeared at the locations of the bases. As you can see, heavy machinery is standing by to start digging.
So there is your infield as seen from somewhere out in right-center.
Just after I took this picture, a truck bearing the logo of a construction company appeared, and I sensed that I was being shooed away. It occurred to me that tomorrow may be my last actual entry into the site until I can purchase a ticket. Hopefully, the team will allow occasional hardhat tours for photo documentation. We ballpark geeks need to be kept up to date!
"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 3003 found on this site. Click the image to be taken to the original post. A new list is created every 10 minutes.
A detail from the above image shows that the section signage is now in place
A distinct misstep, ostensibly to guard against missteps. But methinks I smell a lawyer...
I don't exactly know what this is. A first-aid station? Concession office?
New Year's Eve, 2008
Lots of self-portraits were taken here after the final out.
Doors directly to the concourse, and a view of the stands beyond
Looking back toward the park from just beyond the north end of the Northstar platform.
Kirby Jr. set to take down the last number
Brick work just inside the opening matches the color of the limestone - per Jerry Bell's requirements.
We bumped into Jerry Bell (at right)!
Construction of the stands is moving from left to right in this image.
One more exterior view shows that, while the original look was attractive in a way, it seems to be a variation on the look of the Washington ballpark (albeit with a much more coherent collection of elements). What's remarkable is that the design team has refined the concept amazingly well, improving it immeasurably. What we're actually getting is clearly descended from this, but it's in a whole different league:
You'll be able to park here for a quick stop at the Pro Shop or ticket window.
We'll be packed into the first five rows of section 136. Hey, Wilson! I'm bringing my glove!
Left to right: Opat, Oliva, Dave St. Peter, Melvin Tennant (Meet Minneapolis), Jerry Bell, Rybak
These outfield stands will likely remain visible to passersby.
Look at all those flag poles! But wouldn't the one from Met Stadium look great just inside the gates in the middle of that entrance plaza?
Waiting for a train. Reading on the promenade. How urbane.
Perhaps these very bold, Hitchcockian birds picking at left-over popcorn and peanuts were portents of what was to come.
Catwalks provide access to the View Level seats (from the Ballpark Authority July update)
The Pro Shop
Thanks for all the hard work out there, Cold Safety-Line Dudes. (I'm glad that my job does not require safety lines...)