Rogers Centre rejig ‘ode to stadium history’



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Toronto Blue Jays unveil progress on stadium renovation Image: Toronto Blue Jays

The Major League Baseball (MLB) team Toronto Blue Jays are giving fans a peek inside their home pitch – the Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario (Canada), which is in the midst of its biggest ever renovation.

‘cp24.com’ stated that the team has also unveiled four “brand-new outfield neighborhoods”, that will be ready for fans to enjoy when the Jays suit up for their home opener on April 11th.

The Toronto Blue Jays are a Canadian professional baseball team based in Toronto, Canada. The Blue Jays compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the American League East division. Since 1989, the team has played its home games primarily at the Rogers Centre in downtown Toronto.

The 49,282-capacity Rogers Centre is a multipurpose retractable roof stadium in Downtown Toronto, Ontario, Canada, situated at the base of the CN Tower near the Northern shore of Lake Ontario. Opened in 1989 on the former Railway Lands, it is home to the Toronto Blue Jays of Major League Baseball (MLB).

‘cp24.com’ further stated that the team sent out a statement which read, “The above announcement is part of the first phase of the multiyear renovations to Rogers Centre that will transform the stadium into a ballpark through a series of projects focused on modernizing the fan experience and building world-class player facilities.”

The four new outfield sections will offer “differentiated experiences to fit the unique interests of Blue Jays fans,” the statement added.

The ‘Corona Rooftop Patio’, opening in the right field at the 500 level, will be a “rooftop patio oasis, nestled in Toronto’s iconic skyline.”

The team stated, “Corona and the Blue Jays are bringing extra sunshine into the ballpark in this new rooftop patio oasis situated beneath the CN Tower, fans become a part of Toronto’s skyline in the highest section of Rogers Centre’s iconic rooftop.”

The menu will feature the “full Corona family of products, plus frozen cocktails and modern takes on ballpark classics.”

‘The Park Social’, opening in the left field at the 500 level, will be a “park within the park for fans of all ages featuring games and comfortable places to hang out.”

The neighborhood will be a “casual, open-air space where the best of Toronto’s parks are brought into the ballpark,” according to the team.

The Park Social menu will feature “food truck-style eats, such as bacon-pepper grilled cheese, brownie sundaes and milkshakes.”

In addition to these new rooftop spaces, every 500 level seat is being replaced, for the first time since the stadium opened in 1989.

Footage provided by the team showed the building’s gutted interior.

Workers can be seen spreading concrete across large platforms, and positioning steel beams hoisted by cranes to the upper levels.

The two other new neighborhoods are being created lower in the stadium, at the 100 level.

“The Stop,” center field behind the batter’s eye, is described as “your neighborhood bar to grab a drink with friends before first pitch”.

The team added, “In an ode to stadium history, ‘The Stop’ sits behind the batter’s eye in a space originally planned as a transit stop, showcasing the many different neighborhoods in which Toronto’s transit system runs through.”

It will offer diverse food offerings and quick drinks, including Jamaican beef patties, banh mi sandwiches and signature cocktails.

Lastly, ‘The Catch Bar’ will be situated above the visitors’ bullpen, providing fans with “unprecedented views, the place to be seen and catch a home run.”

Its menu will feature “classic cocktails and trendy food bites, such as mac and cheese with Montreal smoked meat, Cuban sandwiches and brioche pretzel bites.”

In addition to these four neighborhood spaces, the Blue Jays are introducing renovated and new group spaces that will offer fans new event options for their next ballpark outing.

Spaces will be available to all ticketed fans when not reserved for a group.

The popular ‘WestJet Flight Deck’, located center field at the 200 level, will be renovated to provide fans with a “brewery-style refresh with new food and drink options, such as BBQ brisket and jerk chicken nachos.”

The team further stated, “Fans can now host group events with varying capacities (50 to 300 fans) in parts of this fan-favorite space, the full WestJet Flight Deck will be available to all ticketed fans when not reserved by a group, while upper sections will remain open for most games.”

Two new group spaces are also set to be added, the ‘Terrace’, with capacity for up to 150 fans in the right field corner at the 200 level, and the ‘Mezzanine’, a level below, in “stellar home run catching territory”, with capacity for up to 60 fans.

These projects are all set to be completed prior to the 2023 season, however the $300 million renovation project will continue over the next few off-seasons, with full completion of the project expected by 2025.

The team concluded by stating, “The Rogers Centre was conceptualized as a multipurpose stadium when it opened in 1989 and has not undergone a large-scale renovation in its 33-year history. The scope of this project addresses the most important challenges with the current stadium, while not rushing the necessary long-term work to maintain the ballpark for the future generations of fans.”

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