SBD/Issue 14/Facilities & Venues

Orioles Ready To Explore Some Renovations At Camden Yards

Orioles Will Enter Planning Stages Next Week,
But Any Significant Changes Are A Year Away

Orioles officials yesterday said that they "will enter the beginning stages of planned renovations" to Oriole Park at Camden Yards when the MLB regular season ends on Sunday, according to Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore SUN. Orioles VP/Planning & Development Janet Marie Smith said that "discussions about Camden Yards enhancements are still in the 'conceptual stage' and the team will likely meet with Maryland Stadium Authority officials in late October to go over the plans." Smith, who presided over the original design and construction of the 18-year-old ballpark, added, "We've got some ideas that we are working on, and we're kind of getting them priced out. We got some very conceptual ideas. We want to test them and make sure the cost of doing them will make sense before we take it any further." Any "significant renovation will wait until after" the '11 season. Smith acknowledged that she and Orioles Owner Peter Angelos "meet once a week and have regular discussions about improvements that can be made at Camden Yards." She noted that the "discussions have included potentially adding restaurants or bars in the stadium that will allow fans to dine or drink while still watching the action on the field." Smith: "We're not planning to do anything radical -- just some tweaks. We don't want to lose any of our prime seating, and we don't want to lose any of the picturesque quality that makes Camden Yards stand out. We're looking at things we can to upgrade, particularly the concession stands." Zrebiec notes a "big part of the attraction is how the stadium has stayed true to its classic ballpark roots, something that Oriole fans have long appreciated while resisting significant change to the facility." Smith asserted that the team is "very mindful of that while discussing any major changes to the ballpark" (Baltimore SUN, 9/30).

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