May 29, 2014
DAVIS, Calif. - La Rue Field, home to the UC Davis softball team and site of several NCAA Division II Regional Championships, will undergo a multimillion-dollar renovation in 2015 to create a much-improved facility for the Aggies and a better gameday experience for fans.
The renovations, estimated to cost between $3.3 million and $4.3 million, are part of a comprehensive strategic plan for UC Davis Athletics facilities. The project will include stadium lights, upgraded seating, a new scoreboard, a building for a permanent concession stand and restrooms, and a press box.
It will be the largest renovation of La Rue Field and comes as UC Davis Athletics' commitment to improved facilities is taking center stage with the building of a new women's field hockey facility on the west side of campus.
Located southwest of La Rue Road and Russell Boulevard in Davis, the field has been for about three decades home to the softball team, which captured a Division II national championship in 2003.
"La Rue Field has hosted several premiere softball events, including six Division II regional championships between 1994 and 2002," said Director of Athletics Terry Tumey. "We are constantly improving our facilities in an attempt to provide a first-class experience for our student-athletes and our community. This is a project we're particularly excited to see moving forward."
Preliminary designs are expected to be complete in the fall with construction tentatively scheduled to start either next February or immediately after the conclusion of the 2015 softball season in May.
The renovated facility will feature major upgrades. New bleachers will be angled to provide an optimum view of home plate and with plans to have seating for as many as 500 fans.
A press box at the top the stands will provide seating locations for scoreboard, public address and media relations personnel. Permanent structures housing concessions and restrooms will also be built.
"A better gameday experience has been a major priority with the renovations," said Nona Richardson, executive senior associate athletics director. "We want our fans to look forward to coming to watch the Aggies play."
Other features will include:
* all-weather batting cages to allow practice even if weather limits the availability of the field; * stadium lights to enable Aggies to practice and compete in the evening and provide students with flexibility to meet academic obligations and class schedules; and * a new scoreboard to replace the existing one in right-center field.
Renovations to the dugouts are also being planned.