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Shaking Up the Jake: What's Upcoming With the 2024-2025 Renovations


On Opening Day 2024, Jacobs Field its 30th anniversary as the ballpark for Cleveland baseball at the corner of Carnegie and Ontario (which is so hard to believe!).


However, what was once considered the prize jewel of MLB when it opened, with a then record 455 straight sellouts in the mid-to-late 90's, has since slowly been on the decline in attendance numbers and reputation as one of the best ballparks in the country.


Renovations about a decade ago (2014-2015) were a mixed success with the addition of the right field Corner bar and the right field local neighborhood eateries being a big hit with fans. Standing room additions in left and right field were well received as well.


However the upper deck right field party deck "shipping containers" never were embraced by the fans, few of the seats were ever sold outside of the playoffs, and clearly the structure clashes with the overall framework of Jacobs Field as a whole.


This past May, plans were unveiled for the next big renovations project to address this issue and the aging of the ballpark which is now badly in need of some upgrades.


Titled "Progressive Field Remained" (note: in this blog post I'll continue to refer to the ballpark as its former name, Jacobs Field) this is a 2-year project that will be fully completed by Opening Day 2025 with the first wave of renovations set to be completed by the start of 2024.

2024

The initial construction already already began shortly after this past All-Star break for a building beyond right field on East 9th Street.


What is the purpose of this new four level building? It'll serve as a new kitchen and commissary for the Guardians concessionaire while also providing storing facilities for the ballpark. Expected completion date is Opening Day 2024.


In progress as of last week at the start of October is construction on the right field Upper Deck and Terrace Hub projects. With the growing trend towards needing social spaces for the younger fans in sporting events, the Cleveland Guardians management is adding a few in the Upper Deck which more times than not has failed to sellout seats in recent years.


This newly revamped Upper Deck will feature a Beer Garden down the left field line and a new group outing space in right field which is replacing the ugly white looking "shipping containers" I mentioned above.


Also included in the Upper Deck is new concession spaces (including Grab and Go concessions) with two new View Box bars that will "flank" home plate and allow more open sightlines according to the team's official website.


All the renovations for the Upper Deck are expected to be completed by next Opening Day in 2024 which hopefully will be a welcome addition to what's been an issue with Jacobs Field since the early 2000's---the poorly outdated and bland Upper Deck seats and concessions.


2025

The next wave of renovations is set to be completed by Opening Day 2025. The Terrace Club restaurant, which is one of the most notable features of the ballpark, is being reimagined and renamed the "Terrance Hub."


It'll be an open air hub with ticketed seating on the 200 and 300 levels featuring "authentic Cleveland Beer Hall food and beverage experience" on the 400 level seating area which will be open to all in attendance for a given game. However, the ticketed seating sections in the 300 level will be an exclusive private club space.


Another exclusive new dining experience will be titled, "the Dugout Club" which is going to allow for great field level seating with an exclusive lounge behind home plate. This new club will feature seven private lounges for groups to "enjoy an exclusive experience."


Then there's changes accommodating the team and front office. At long last, the once lush clubhouses when the ballpark opened in 1994, are now badly outdated and are getting renovated for the first time. Designs and features of the clubhouses are still in the design phrase and construction on them wouldn't begin for another season.


The Cleveland Guardians front office is also getting renovations for their working accommodations which will include a fifth floor to the current four level building.


The Terrace Hub, Dugout Club, clubhouses, and new front office renovations are expected to be completed at the start of the 2025 season.

Project Funding

What made all of these new projects for Jacobs Field possible is the new lease agreement with the city of Cleveland and the franchise through at least the year 2036 with options to extend through 2046. The estimated total according to the official press release is 202.5 million with 67.5 million coming from the Cleveland Guardians.


Thoughts About the Renovations

Personally I'm in favor of these upcoming changes. All ballparks need to evolve and grow overtime changing to the current trends in how a ballgame is watched and enjoyed.


Clearly social spaces, with standing room only sections, are a big hit with the younger generation who aren't content with sitting in a seat for 9 innings like it was back in the mid-to-late 90's.


While the Terrace Club is a unique feature of Jacobs Field, it's lost its appeal as something most fans seek out watch a game from.


As I noted above, the Upper Deck is the most badly outdated area of the ballpark that needs big changes. While the seats are cheaper, most fans (including myself) didn't particularly enjoy games as much in the Upper Deck compared to having seats in the lower concourse due to the lack of concessions and seating options.


The upgrades to the clubhouse will help appeal to the current players in desiring to stick with the ballclub and free agents who want to enjoy a state of the art training facility with all the latest accommodations before and after a game.


Looking forward to seeing these changes at the ballpark starting next season!

Check out this video which came with the official press release giving visuals on how these renovations will look like when completed in 2024 and 2025.


Sources:

All photos are my own


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