Phase I of Renovations to Lee County Sports Complex, Spring Training Home of the Twins, Complete
February 24, 2014
After much anticipation, Lee County will unveil Phase I of renovations to the Lee County Sports Complex and Hammond Stadium, home of the Minnesota Twins’ Spring Training and the Minor League Fort Myers Miracle. The renovations are part of $48.5 million in upgrades to the complex, $27.5 of which is contributed by Lee County, with $15 million from the state of Florida, and the remaining $6 million contributed by the Twins, that will be completed in full by February 2015.
The first phase of the renovations which are being debuted include a new residential Player Development Academy, renovations to the Minor League clubhouse and administrative areas, a new Minor League playing field, an agility field, an expanded seating capacity, from 8,000 to 9,300, a new parking lot and the completion of a 360 degree boardwalk and concourse. The boardwalk and minor league building will be fully complete for the first game, while the new practice field, parking lot and Player Development Academy will be finished later this spring.
“We’ve focused on two of the long-term goals of the Twins through the design of the renovations – to provide an incredible fan experience and to provide resources for player development that impact on-field results,” said Bruce Miller, Principal and Project Manager at Populous. “With the opening of Phase I, fans will see the impact everything from the boardwalk to the Player Development Academy will have on the overall environment and experience at Lee County Sports Complex.”
The player development academy is only the third of its kind in the nation, and will provide dormitory-style housing for talent and communal spaces, along with premier training resources. It will allow for the team and young talent to live and train in one space.
The boardwalk, which allows for a 360 degree path around the stadium, will provide fans with a continuous view of the action on the field, along with more dynamic seating options. It will extend from beyond right field to left field and will feature numerous bars and concession areas, connected by the boardwalk.
The second phase of the renovations will include upgraded and expanded concourses, improved concessions, renovations to the restrooms, premium seating improvements, the expansion of the clubhouse, a new retail store, new spaces for group seating and renovations to the press box. This phase will be completed in February 2015.
The Twins have been training in Fort Myers at the Lee County Sports Complex since 1991. In 2012, the Twins signed a 30-year lease to remain at the Lee County Sports Complex. Each year, spring training games generate more than $47 million for Lee County, driving visitors to local attractions, restaurants, hotels and shopping.
The renovations are designed by Populous, a global sport and convention center architecture firm, and construction is being managed by Manhattan Twins Joint Venture, a partnership between Manhattan Construction Company, Chris-Tel Construction and Casey Construction.
The first game of the season at the renovated Hammond Stadium will be played on March 1, against the Boston Red Sox. For tickets, visit www.minnesota.twins.mlb.com/spring_training. To learn more about Lee County Sports Complex and Hammond Stadium, visit www.leeparks.org.