LF: 335' CF: 408' RF: 335'
|Year ||Total ||Average
Nearest Major Airport:
Eppley Airfield in Omaha (3.2 miles)
Nearest Pro Ballparks:
Werner Park in Papillion (17.5 miles)
Haymarket Park in Lincoln (59 miles)
Lewis & Clark Park in Sioux City, IA (92.4 miles)
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Where the pursuit of baseball never ends.
Forever, or at least long destined to be known as the Rosenblatt replacement, the College World Series got its built-just-for-it home in 2011 when TD Ameritrade Park opened three miles due north of where the event blossomed for 60 years in the lovable, somewhat ramshackle stadium that is no more.
Well before the last of Rosenblatt Stadium met its demise, courtesy of strategically placed explosives that were denoted on August 22nd of 2012, the organ and "Road to Omaha" statue that were a big part of the ambiance at the old neighborhood-based stadium were moved to the new downtown digs, which has the exact same outfield dimensions of where the CWS was played annually from 1950 through 2010.
A nod to the acreage of between the lines outfield grass aside, there's scant similarities between the structures that were named for a local mayor (Johnny Rosenblatt) and corporation (TD Ameritrade), although the corporate-backed ballpark does reside on a street named for the Omaha mayor (Mike Fahey) who was in office when the decision was made to build it.
What TD Ameritrade's park has is multiple levels of blue-backed grandstand seating that compliment blue-hued bleachers that span the outfield. An open concourse traces the entire field while numerous suites are situated atop the stands within the infield. Outside, gleaming glass and brownish bricks form an elegant exterior. Yes, the home of the CWS wears the accoutrements of a modern ballpark quite well.
Yet outside of about a dozen days in June, TD Ameritrade Park doesn't get a lot of use. The minor league team that shared Rosenblatt with the CWS moved into its very own ballpark, albeit in a very suburban site, in 2011, so that means game dates in Omaha end when an NCAA baseball champion is crowned. And that means if you stop by the ballpark on the numerous summer days that follow, four locked up entrance gates and the glimpses of an empty stadium from them are the memory you'll be left with (the local U does use it prior to the CWS).
As for something logical for the location -- a college baseball museum -- that already exists (kind of, anyway) in Lubbock, Texas, so a college Hall and minor league ball aren't realistic possibilities at the venue that doesn't get a chance to do much more than serve the purpose for which it was built. However, hosting the sport's premier amateur showcase event makes this ballpark a must-visit one, and worthy of a stop-by even if it's only to see where the "road to Omaha" actually leads to.
TD Ameritrade Park is within the portion of downtown Omaha known as "north downtown," and some hotels, shops, restaurants and nightlife are found in the very nearby vicinity of the intersections of 13th Street and Cuming Street, which is where the "front door" to the ballpark (Gate 1) is placed.
The ballpark is located quite close to Omaha's large arena and the river that serves as the boundary between Nebraska and Iowa. The sleek facade of the CenturyLink Center is the ballpark's primary backdrop, as the 18,300-seat arena that opened in 2003 noticeably stands a short distance beyond center field. Two blocks east of TD Ameritrade Park is the Missouri River, which separates Omaha, NE from Council Bluffs, IA.
Plenty of paved parking is available at the ballpark and near it. Organizers of the CWS tout that there are 5,000 parking spaces "within a 7-10 minute walk" of TD Ameritrade Park. Prices vary at the nearby surface lots and garages, although some of the closest parking lots are specifically reserved for premium seat and all-games passholders during the College World Series.
TD Ameritrade Park Facts & Figures
Construction cost: $131 million
Financing: Public and private funds were used. The public's portion was $98,035,000, which was raised by the City of Omaha Public Facilities Corporation issuing lease-purchase bonds in 2009 and 2010. Private donors paid for the rest. To pay back bondholders, revenue that the ballpark generates is used along with some proceeds from hotel and rental car taxes. Additionally, a large amount comes courtesy of "community betterment" funding that is funded by local keno players via their participation in the lottery-style game that's operated by Big Red Keno; through 2014, privately-owned Big Red Keno's portion of revenue that was dedicated to paying debt service on the ballpark was $8,132,814.
Architects: HDR and Populous collaborated on the design, while DLR Group was the architect of MEP coordination; HDR Architecture, an Omaha-headquartered firm, is the architect of record
General contractor/construction manager: Kiewit Building Group, which is headquartered in Omaha
Ceremonial groundbreaking took place on January 21, 2009.
Built on land where a Union Pacific railroad yard had long been, although a parking lot for the then-named Qwest Center occupied the spot prior to the ballpark's construction. An exhibit about the site's Union Pacific history is near the stairs that lead up to the left field corner entrance (Gate 4).
25 years is the initial term of the contract for the ballpark to host the College World Series. Given that length, the CWS is guaranteed to be played at TD Ameritrade Park through 2035.
Owned by the City of Omaha. Operated by the Metropolitan Entertainment & Convention Authority (MECA), which since being established in 2000 has acted on the city's behalf to manage public event venues in Omaha.
Naming rights: TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation, an Omaha-based investment services company, agreed to a 20-year naming rights and services deal with MECA, which brokered the contract on behalf of Omaha, that was formally announced on June 10, 2009. Upon announcement, all involved parties reported that the agreement was "valued at approximately $20 million over the duration of the contract," which will expire after the 2030 CWS. However, $15 million is the actual total price paid for the ballpark's naming rights, which means the average annual value for that aspect of the deal is $750,000. The additional value of the pact is tied into the "services" portion that was negotiated between TD Ameritrade and MECA.
Per the naming rights agreement, the ballpark is officially called "TD Ameritrade Park Omaha." But the Omaha ending to the name isn't usually mentioned when the ballpark is referenced in the media, thus the full name is rarely seen or heard.
Has 30 suites, 17 sections of club level seating that hold 2,500 people, and a three-tier press box.
The sod for the field was grown in Fort Morgan, Colorado by Graff’s Turf Farms, which has also grown the grass that covers five major league fields, including Busch Stadium and Wrigley Field. Installed in November 2010, the sod that blankets the field at TD Ameritrade Park is a blend comprised of mostly Kentucky bluegrass with a little perennial ryegrass mixed in. The exact blend was 85% bluegrass and 15% ryegrass when the surface was named the 2012 Field of the Year for college baseball by the Sports Turf Managers Association.
Since opening, the ballpark has had two permanent tenants. In addition to the NCAA Division I Men’s College World Series, the Creighton University baseball team, the Bluejays, has played at TD Ameritrade Park since it opened during their 2011 regular season. Previously, the downtown Omaha-based school played their home games at the on-campus CU Sports Complex, where the Bluejays played for 23 years at a venue that's less than a mile (0.8) away from TDA Park.
Hosted the 2014 and 2016 Big Ten Baseball Tournament. The conference's tournament will be played annually at TD Ameritrade Park from 2018-2022.
First game: April 19, 2011; Nebraska beat Creighton, 2-1, with 22,197 as the announced attendance. The game was played in 2 hours and 36 minutes and Creighton's Ty Blach threw the first pitch to Nebraska's Kale Kiser at 6:42 p.m. The first hit in ballpark history was an infield single by future major leaguer and then Cornhusker Cody Asche. The first ever home run was hit by a Creighton player, Mike Gerber, in the park's second game, which was played on April 22, 2011.
First College World Series game: June 18, 2011; Vanderbilt defeated North Carolina, 7-3, with 22,745 as the announced attendance. The game took 3 hours and 39 minutes to play and was preceded by a ceremonial first pitch thrown by former President George W. Bush.
CWS ballpark firsts (all of which occurred on 6/18/11):
|Pitch ||Batter ||Hit (single) ||Home Run ||Winning Pitcher ||Losing Pitcher ||Save
|Patrick Johnson ||Tony Kemp ||Tony Kemp ||Connor Harrell ||Corey Williams ||Patrick Johnson ||Nick Maronde