January 6, 2015
Developers break ground on Columbia baseball stadium
Developers broke ground Tuesday on the City of Columbia's new minor league baseball stadium.
Spirit Communications Park is being built on Bull Street where the old mental hospital used to be. The $37 million stadium is expected to seat about 8,000 people and will be used for baseball and other special events.
"we're going to have all sorts of things, concerts, events," said Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin. "It's going to be a year-round facility we anticipate having 400 to 500 events here over the course of the year. It's going to be fun."
The ballpark will serve as the home field of the still unnamed minor league team that will play in Columbia. The facility is expected to open in April of 2016.
"It's an exciting day," said Jason Freier, the CEO of Hardball Capital, the group that's bringing the team to Columbia. "A lot of work has gone into this, so this is just a rewarding day."
For Tuesday's event, developers put out a home plate, pitcher's mound, and bases were they will sit when the stadium's complete. People won't have to wait long to see progress on the park; by next week, they'll begin digging at the site, and in six to eight weeks the foundation will be laid.
Developers have also set up a website to keep up with their progress, www.columbiaproball.com