It might be hard to believe, with the first pitch just over seven months away, but The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches is on schedule to open in spring 2017, according to officials.
Photos shot from a helicopter last week by The Palm Beach Post’s Greg Lovett show the progress that has been made since ground was broken on the former landfill in November.
Expect a flurry of activity in the coming weeks, including the installation of grass on the six Washington Nationals’ practice fields.
The Nationals’ fields are on the south side of the site, starting with two fields just east of the man-made lake and a “cloverleaf” of four fields just west of Military Trail.
The Astros’ fields start at the northeast corner of the site, with a cloverleaf of four fields and two more fields to the west of the cloverleaf.
The Nationals and Astros each will have two practice fields built to the same dimensions as their regular-season ballparks, Nationals Park in Washington and Minute Maid Field in Houston.
Because of the way the utility lines were installed, the Nationals practice fields will be completed first.
As of last week, 10 of the 12 practice fields had gravel on them. Grass sprigs will be installed on the Nationals’ fields in a week or two.
The main stadium is visible in the center. The outfield walls are up.
The Nationals clubhouse can be seen behind home plate toward right field. The Astros clubhouse is behind left field.
The Nationals clubhouse will include an outdoor swimming pool for players.
Brady Ballard, the stadium’s general manager, said about 200 workers are on the site every day.
The project is being built by HKS and Hunt Construction. It is financed in large part by the county’s tax on hotels and motels.
The Astros and Nationals will join the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals, who hold spring training at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, as the only spring training teams in Palm Beach County. The New York Mets train in Port St. Lucie.