BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — The Birmingham City Council has approved $6 million in funding for renovations at two historic stadiums in the city.
Rickwood Field will receive $2 million while Legion Field will receive $4 million for work to be done sprucing up the facilities. Birmingham City Council President Wardine Alexander said this is a reinvestment back into Birmingham’s neighborhoods with the renovations designed to attract more people to Birmingham.
“Some of the sporting events I have attended in Atlanta, Georgia, have more than one stadium, and those stadiums attract different types of events, fan bases, and experiences,” Alexander said. “I feel the more we have to capture an audience and provide that entertainment experience would be great for the city.”
Alexander said the $4 million going toward Legion Field will help with renovations of restrooms, a new roof over the northeast end zone, and replacing some of the cameras on the north decks. Friends of Rickwood Field Executive Director Gerald Watkins said the money will help fund major renovations to 110-year-old baseball stadium.
“This is going to help us firm up some of the issues we’ve had with wood, concrete, and steel that has aged over the years,” Watkins said. “It will allow us to improve the playing surface, and hopefully, it will allow us to resume the Rickwood Classic and hopefully look for bigger and better events.”
The Classic had been put hold until improvements were made to the baseball field.
Watkins said funding for the renovations allows the Rickwood Field to remain open for another 100 years.
Alexander said renovations for both venues will begin in six to 12 months.