The Unified Government Commission approved plans for a new state-of-the-art video board at CommunityAmerica Ballpark for the 2015 season.
The UG Commission voted to approve the new scoreboard at the Thursday night, Jan. 22, UG Commission meeting, without discussing it. Discussion was held at the Jan. 5 UG Economic Development and Finance standing committee meeting.
According to UG agenda information, the video scoreboard is estimated to cost between $400,000 and $450,000. The UG had budgeted $250,000 for T-Bones’ stadium improvements this year, so the budget had to be increased about $250,000 on Thursday. The money will not come from taxpayers’ funds or from the UG general fund; it will come from a fund that already has been designated to pay for stadium upkeep, UG officials said at the Jan. 5 meeting.
The new scoreboard would be expected to last about 10 years, according to officials’ remarks during the Jan. 5 meeting. They will gain the opportunity to have more electronic advertising on the scoreboard with the change, officials said. During the public comment period Jan. 5, a candidate for UG office, Christal Watson, suggested offering naming rights to the scoreboard in order to help pay for it; however that suggestion was not added to the proposal.
The T-Bones on Friday sent out a news release about the new video board:
“For the last 12 years the T-Bones have showcased world-class baseball entertainment for residents and visitors to our city,” Mayor Mark Holland said in a news release from the T-Bones. “The new HD video board is another step in their continued offering of a great, family-friendly entertainment option in our community that all can enjoy. I can’t wait for opening day!”
The high-definition video board, which will be installed where the current scoreboard stands, will measure approximately 36 feet wide and 30 feet tall. It will be more than four times larger than the current video board.
“It’s been a pleasure to work with city staff, Mayor Holland’s administration and the Board of Commissioners,” said T-Bones president Adam Ehlert. “The cooperative effort reinforces our commitment that T-Bones Baseball is a cornerstone of affordable, family-oriented entertainment in the metropolitan area.”
Daktronics will design, manufacture and install the energy-efficient video board, which will replace the scoreboard that’s been used at CommunityAmerica Ballpark since the stadium opened in 2003.
“This will have a huge, positive impact on our fan experience at the ballpark,” said T-Bones vice president and general manager Chris Browne. “It’s not only a great enhancement to the gameday presentation, but it also provides our partners with an improved platform to get their message across. Our fans are going to love it.”
Construction will begin in February.
Architectural renderings of the new scoreboard will be available in the upcoming weeks.
The new video board is slated to be ready when the T-Bones open the 2015 regular season on May 22 against Lincoln.