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Riverfront Stadium

A Baseball Experience for the Whole Community

Project Location

Wichita, KS

Client

Wichita Wind Surge

Capacity

5,935 seats

Project Type

Baseball Stadium

A welcome addition to the City of Wichita, Riverfront Stadium was developed to serve as a catalyst for economic development, as well as provide family entertainment. Home to the Wichita Wind Surge, the Double-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins, the stadium is carefully sited to accommodate a future mixed-use development as and the planned Wichita Sports Museum. By placing the ballpark on the west side of the property and realigning McLean Boulevard, the design team created room for future hotels, restaurants, and entertainment venues on the Arkansas River.

Riverfront Stadium has a capacity for 10,000, and was designed for today’s fans. Expectations today exceed the traditional stadium seating options and require that the ballpark offer a variety of places to watch the game. The overall ballpark capacity includes traditional stadium seats, berm seats, loge boxes, outfield standing-room only, drink rail seats, a picnic area, a river front party deck, an upper-level party deck, club seats, and suites. The wide range of seating types provide choices for avid baseball fans, young families with children, business entertainment, large company events, parties, civic groups, and young professionals. Today’s ballparks must provide flexibility for fans to move, walk, and find unique vantage points to watch the game. The baseball experience goes beyond just watching the game, so the architecture team designed spaces that provide socialization and a sense of community. Riverfront Stadium provides all these opportunities with a broad appeal to the Wichita community: avid baseball fans and casual fans in search for great summer entertainment.

The architecture of the facility captures the character of the adjacent Delano District in materials and color palette. The design team met with neighborhood groups to hear their ideas and provide design updates throughout the project. Reinforcing the stadium design, DLR Group provided designs for graphics and wayfinding throughout the stadium.

Building a Ballpark

The ballpark was delivered as a design-build project in 16 months, where DLR Group partnered with SJCF Architects, JE Dunn Construction, and Eby Construction. A key to the project's success was weekly team meetings that included the design-build team, City of Wichita oversight committee, and ballpark stakeholders. This large group built consensus, made decisions, and kept the team moving forward.

01
Crystal Ball

Player Development

The multi-purpose stadium was designed and constructed during a significant reorganization of the Minor Leagues by Major League Baseball. This reorganization included the adoption of new facility standards that would focus on player development areas. The new standards were not published prior to design and construction but the Wichita Ballpark would be required to meet the unpublished standards. DLR Group’s experience with minor league baseball, familiarity with player development areas, and discussions with the ball team guided the design. Upon publication of the new standards, Riverfront Stadium easily met or exceeded all the standards required by Major League Baseball.

Riverfront Stadium home of the Wichita Wind Surge aerial view with baseball field illuminated at night

The ballpark is oriented so all fans in the seating bowl, suites, club and party decks have a view of the Wichita skyline.

02
Connection

Community Stadium

The ballpark is designed as a community entertainment venue, not only hosting the Wind Surge. The stadium has been used for Wichita State University baseball games, concerts, and football games. Paved areas around the concourse can be used as multipurpose event spaces for civic events.

Seating in right field with alterative seating platform and mezzanine with picnic tables and swivel chairs along railing.

A picnic area on the right field line accommodates large groups to a barbecue and a night at the ballpark.

03
Growth

Ballpark as Economic Driver

The investment in Riverfront Stadium by the City of Wichita has created increased interest in development around the ballpark. The City has further invested with a parking garage and multi-modal transportation center. Riverfront Stadium will be an anchor to the South Delano district for years to come.

Corner view of the stadium from above the Arkansas River. Baseball field is illuminated with stadium lights

The ballpark created development parcels on the Arkansas River for future hotels, restaurants, and shops.

04
Values

Fit the Wichita Community

Ballparks must reflect the community they are a part of; they must fit. Riverfront Ballpark does this in several ways. First, the ballpark is oriented so the view from the seating bowl, club, suites, and party decks are of the Arkansas River and the skyline of Wichita. Second, materials used in the ballpark – brick colors, exposed black painted structure, weathered wood, copper, plaza paving, and stone accents – reference bridges and the railroad to reflect the Arkansas River, and the rich history of the adjacent Delano neighborhood. Third, Wichita is a city filled with public art. The ballpark incorporated artwork by local, regional, and nationally known artists that support the importance of art in the community.

Illuminated Wichita Sign on 2nd floor above baseball mural, right of stadium entrance. Canopy over entry and roof patio right

The baseball mural created by Brickmob is part of the City of Wichita's public art program.

Single story brick building with stone details and large windows. Lawn between building and parking with black metal fence

Brick colors, exposed black steel, and cast stone details echo the materials of the adjacent Delano Historic District.

05
Adaptation

A New Type of Suite

Typical suites provide two experiences: an indoor lounge and outdoor tiered seating. DLR Group created a new type of suite that adds a third zone: a patio/social space. The patios have proven to be exceedingly popular with suite holders. Providing an outdoor lounge continues the fun of pregame mingling, as well as socializing during the entire game.

Suites on left with flexible wall opened out to patio with padded chairs and stadium seating. Grey railings between suites

A patio outside the suites extends the social area toward the field, and connects suite holders to the ballgame.

MILB's Crown Jewel

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