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Meeting to Discuss $4 Million Baseball Field Revamp

by ARLnow.com September 8, 2011 at 2:24 pm 3,272 21 Comments

The Arlington County Parks Department will be holding a meeting next week to discuss a proposed $3-4 million renovation to one of the baseball fields at Barcroft Park.

George Washington University, which uses Barcroft as the home field for its baseball team, is proposing to fully-fund a number of enhancements to the field, including artificial turf, dugouts, new restrooms, new stadium seating, a press box, a bullpen and concession stands. The field’s existing dark sky lighting would not be changed.

The parks department will discuss the proposed changes with the community at a public meeting on Tuesday, at 7:30 p.m. The meeting is being held at the Fairlington Community Center (3308 S. Stafford Street), in room 118.

The County Board is expected to consider the renovation proposal at its Sept. 17 meeting. If approved, construction is expected to begin this fall and be complete by March 2012.

The university has played at Barcroft for nearly 20 years, under an arrangement that made GW responsible for some of the field’s maintenance. Under the proposal, GW will continue to pay a portion of the maintenance costs, in addition to the full cost of the renovations. The field’s usage by the baseball team will remain the same.

  • Brendan

    not a bad deal for them… that’s only a year’s worth of tuition for 80 GW students.

  • Wilbur

    Greeeeeaaaat. So then it can go down just like the Ballston Iceplex. In Arlington. Arlington financed. On Arlington property……. Buuuuuuuut NO Arlington youth team. At the Ballston Iceplex the ice time goes to Universities and adults outside of arlington, but unlike every other rink in the entire area, there is no Tier II CBHL travel hockey program for kids in Arlington. Those kids (and there are a lot of them) have to travel to Reston, Montgomery, Alexandria and other places to play.

    The problem with outside funding for the ball field is that then the outside funders get to use the ball field, not arlington youth. Let them keep the money, and let the field be minimalistic – but let it be for Arlington youth .

    • Novanglus

      The field is used by the Arlington Babe Ruth senior division, and it will be Wakefield High’s varsity home field while the school gets rebuilt.

      This a great deal for Arlington. Our kids get to play on an NCAA quality field while GW pays for the renovations and part of the upkeep.

      As for Kettler, there are lots of youth teams playing there. You’re right that Arlington youth should get priority over adult rec teams from elsewhere. If that’s not happening, it needs to.

      • Will

        Agreed. I played on this field well over two hundred times during my time as an Arlington County baseball player. I also benefitted by going to GW games. Their coaches are very interested in helping out the community.

  • steve85

    They should let the kids use the field for high school baseball tournaments.

    • Richard Cranium

      They should let the kids use the field for youth Tier II hockey.

  • Lou

    Can we get George Mason to do the same for the fields at Quincy?

  • Hap Sphuler

    Mason has had a top notch facility for two decades. They would do what everybody else does in the Northern Region at Quincy…laugh.

  • Stew Magnuson

    Artificial turf? in this day and age? What is this 1975?

    • TMP

      My thoughts exactly. I hate artificial turf and it’s bad for the athlete’s joints.

  • ballstonresident

    $4M is just too high for a ball park. Suggest we pass on this. The county cannot afford this.

    • Novanglus

      Huh? Did you read the article?

      “George Washington University…is proposing to fully-fund…”

      Are you saying we should turn down outside money that benefits our own kids?

      • AllenB

        But if they read the article, what would they complain about?

        • Richard Cranium

          Nothing, as long as there are soldiers in Afghanistan.

          • jared

            outstanding.

    • PikerShorts

      Did you read the headline and hurriedly rush down to leave a poorly thought out knee jerk comment? (I think a lot of commenters here do this)

  • LisaDC

    My son and his friends have been playing on that field for years in Senior Babe Ruth. In fact, one of the GW coaches, coached our kids in the Cooperstown tournament this summer. I imagine they get first dibs on schedule, but this is a win win for all.

  • Suburban Not Urban

    What’s the projected change in maintenance costs – high priced stuff requires high priced maintenance. I’m specifically talking about the cost to the county – the part picked up by GW is not of any concern to the tax payers.

    • Will

      I’m pretty sure turf is cheaper in terms of maintenance cost… by a good deal.

  • SP

    I just don’t see how they have room for everything they want to put in; locker rooms, club house, bullpens, bigger dugouts. This area is constrained by a stream, roads, apartment buildings, etc. I think its a good idea but have trouble seeing how its all going to fit in the current space.

    • CW

      Right now, the field probably IS a stream.

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