Dr Pepper Ballpark is an AA Minor League stadium for the Frisco Rough Riders, located in Frisco, Texas – a rapidly growing suburb 25 miles north of Dallas. We designed and master planned the 10,500-seat facility to be the physical and social centerpiece of a new mixed-use community.
Designed & built in 24 Months
The client group for the project – the developer, a consortium of owners and the City of Frisco – wanted Dr Pepper Ballpark to be designed and constructed in less than 24 months, creating a schedule constraint that lead to a novel design solution, both in terms of ballpark aesthetics and construction phasing. The cost and lead-time of rolled structural steel prevented its use to create a typical upper seating deck of a ballpark. Instead, we proposed that the entire seating bowl be building slab-on-grade. This puts the back row at the level of the main concourse (and street level), stepping down 14’ to the playing field. Instead of a continuous upper seating deck, the design creates a series of independent ‘stick-built’ structures that sit along the back of the on-grade seating bowl. This, in turn, allowed the field and seating bowl to begin construction while the stick-built structures were still under design – significantly shortening the overall design and construction schedule of Dr Pepper Ballpark.
Park Within a Park
Given Frisco’s suburban location and Dr Pepper Ballpark’s position as the first project on a 70-acre piece of empty land, the client emphasized the need for a ballpark design that would attract patrons before the rest of the development was completed. We developed the ‘park within a park’ concept as a way to enhance the fan experience before, during and after games. Because there was no upper deck to cover the main concourse, we worked with our clients to cost-effectively and sustainably design an urban park between the sidewalks around the site and the back of the seating bowl. The individual pavilions located along the back row of the seating bowl are set into the park environment and contain concessions and restrooms on the main concourse and 29 luxury suites connected by open-air bridges on the upper level. The three corners of the 600 square foot site are anchored by larger structures that contain locker rooms with direct access to the playing field, team and administrative offices, commissaries, kitchens, and loading docks. The large, four story building behind home plate solved many design and operational issues: aesthetically it provides a focal point for the entire complex and an appropriate backdrop to home plate; operationally it provides convenient space for a club bar, executive suites, press box, ticketing functions, a team store and street retail; and functionally it acts as a screen from the ever-present Texas winds.