The 2021 MILB Season was to usher in a new era of Red Sox baseball. The movement of the AAA Affiliate from McCoy Stadium in Pawtucket, after 50 years, to a shiny new Polar Park in Worcester was being looked at with fanfare and excitement.
Polar Park was already questioned from the moment ground was broken on the site just off the Kelley Square and Canal District area. The ballpark, expected to be one of the most expensive and extensive undertakings in both Minor and Major League baseball was born with the uncertainty that April 2021 would be a viable completion date for the project.
Named after the well-known beverage company, the ballpark was designed by DAIQ with assistance from Janet Marie Smith, known for her design of Oriole Park at Camden Yards, home to Red Sox AL East rival Baltimore Orioles. The project will feature not only the new stadium but also contain 250 apartments, 2 hotels, a 96,000 sq. ft office and approximately 65,000 sq. ft of shops & restaurants.
The cost of the stadium, a whopping $101 million dollars, $61 million of which is being picked up by the City of Worcester itself. The entire redevelopment project will come to the tune of $240 million.
In March, when Governor Charlie Baker instituted stay-at-home orders for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, construction was initially allowed to continue under certain guidelines, however when the order was amended within the April 1st extension, it put a cease to all non-essential business operations. This caused a halt on the already ambitious timeline until just recently. With just 286 days and counting down until Opening Day 2021, we’ll see if Larry Lucchino’s dream can become a 10,000 person reality.