Expanded and Renovated University of Florida’s Katie Seashole Pressly Softball Stadium Opens
February 12, 2019
The newly renovated and expanded Katie Seashole Pressly Softball Stadium debuts at the University of Florida’s home opener today as they take on the Japan national team in an exhibition game. Designed by Walker Architects and Populous, the $15 million renovations were designed with the utmost fan experience in mind. Elevating the press box and adding shade structures over the seating will now keep Gator fans shaded and protected from the hot Florida sun. The new 360-degree concourse connects the entire ballpark and gives Gator fans continuous views of the action while creating unique spaces to experience the game.
As fans enter the ballpark, they are welcomed immediately by views to the field. Staying true to the University of Florida’s collegiate gothic campus architecture, the ballpark now features expanded berm seating down the 3rd baseline, expanded concessions and restrooms and a team store. Fans can now watch the Gators from two plazas in left field, one at the concourse level with direct access to new concessions and restrooms and a new field level plaza right next to the action. The capacity of the new ballpark nearly doubled to 2,500 with expanded seating and the original bench seating transformed into all chairback seating. In addition to the chairback seating, new table tops with swivel seats were placed along the concourse, giving Gator fans a premium seating option.
In addition to the overall fan experience, several enhancements were designed specifically for the softball program. The ballpark includes expanded dugouts, a new covered bullpen in the outfield and new backstop netting system. Additionally, the two-time national champions have a new home in their new team operations building featuring new player and coaches locker rooms, players’ lounge, athletic training room, film and team meeting room, equipment room, coaches offices and conference room. Gator student-athletes and staff now have direct access from the locker room to the dugout to the field.
The renovations debut after just eight months of construction. Walker and Populous are also working together to design the standalone $65 million Florida Ballpark located across Hull Road from Katie Seashole Pressly Softball Stadium. That ballpark broke ground on February 8 and is set to be complete following the 2020 season.