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First Horizon Park - Home of the Nashville Sounds


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Well, I think it might be interesting to all of our newer Nashvillians on the forum to hear a little about the history of the Sulphur Dell site of First Horizon Park .  I reviewed this thread back to

Seeing that baseball season is almost upon us, I thought some nice shots of First Tennessee Ballpark were in order.  

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I was at the Saturday night game and was expecting some bad weather. Thankfully it only rained before the game. Evidently the people I went with were the only ones that tailgate before a Sounds game haha. The stadium was very nice. I loved the Band Box, still disappointed about the greenway section. The one thing I couldn't understand was the bullpen layout. Is it normal for stadiums of this size to have them pitching on the side of the field towards homeplate with no backdrop? During the Saturday night game a pitch went onto the field so they had to stop play. Also, is the team responsible if somebody gets hurt during a game? Someone got nailed by a foul ball during the game and it looked like an ambulance ended up coming.

 

Oh, and I forgot how boring baseball actually is haha. Stadium is great, but wow is baseball hard to watch, atleast for me. 

Edited by bigeasy
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I was at the Saturday night game and was expecting some bad weather. Thankfully it only rained before the game. Evidently the people I went with were the only ones that tailgate before a Sounds game haha. The stadium was very nice. I loved the Band Box, still disappointed about the greenway section. The one thing I couldn't understand was the bullpen layout. Is it normal for stadiums of this size to have them pitching on the side of the field towards homeplate with no backdrop? During the Saturday night game a pitch went onto the field so they had to stop play. Also, is the team responsible if somebody gets hurt during a game? Someone got nailed by a foul ball during the game and it looked like an ambulance ended up coming.

 

Oh, and I forgot how boring baseball actually is haha. Stadium is great, but wow is baseball hard to watch, atleast for me. 

 

I couldn't agree more!  You have to sit there for three hours, but you basically spend most of your time waiting for the ten minutes of actual action that takes place in those three hours.  Haha...really glad to hear they've created a great stadium experience over there though. 

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The one thing I couldn't understand was the bullpen layout. Is it normal for stadiums of this size to have them pitching on the side of the field towards homeplate with no backdrop? During the Saturday night game a pitch went onto the field so they had to stop play.

I've seen that before. I don't know if it is "normal", but it is definitely more of a minor league thing.

Also, is the team responsible if somebody gets hurt during a game? Someone got nailed by a foul ball during the game and it looked like an ambulance ended up coming.

Person should've been watching. Catch it bare-handed if you have to.

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Also, is the team responsible if somebody gets hurt during a game? Someone got nailed by a foul ball during the game and it looked like an ambulance ended up coming.

 

I doubt it. Unless you can show some sort of negligence on the part of the people who run the park (like poorly placed nets), you'd have a hard time winning a judgement.

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And yes, I'm disappointed about the greenway, too. I hope they rectify that problem soon.

 

I haven't been able to find anything on Metro's websites about it, but I've been looking at the current construction and I think the greenway path will be reconnected (and open to the public) on the outside of the fence once the parking garage is complete.   But it's possible the reconstruction of the greenway will be delayed until after construction of the team owners' residential project, which, if built, will straddle both sides of the greenway.  

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bigeasy, on 01 Jun 2015 - 1:57 PM, said:snapback.png

Also, is the team responsible if somebody gets hurt during a game? Someone got nailed by a foul ball during the game and it looked like an ambulance ended up coming.

 

I doubt it. Unless you can show some sort of negligence on the part of the people who run the park (like poorly placed nets), you'd have a hard time winning a judgement.

 

But what I'm wondering is, despite little if any chance of accountability by negligence, who pays the medical bill and teeth implants and glass eyeball, if a spectator, seated or not and just minding her or his business, gets hit by a ball, and the blood from the ball strike splashes and soils someone else's Polo knit and while Air Max shoes and that someone cries foul.  She or he shouldn't have to have insurance and associated deductible, for such.  I would think the same would apply in Bridgestone for flying pucks as well.

-==-

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^^^ I really hope you guys are joking.

 

Kidding? Well kind of.  The domino effect was for hyperbole, but I still believe that, while it's no big issue worthy of a topic, it still deserves an answer defined for those who would inquire, just as has bigeasy.  It's a good point, albeit small.

-==-

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Not real estate related but... Baseball tickets always include some form of the following:

 

User [the ticket holder] assumes, for him/herself as well as each minor in the charge of such User (“Minors”), all risk and danger incidental to the game of baseball, whether occurring prior to, during, or subsequent to the playing of the game, including but not limited to the risk of injury by thrown or broken bats or fragments thereof, thrown or batted balls, or items thrown or injuries otherwise caused by other spectators, and other hazardous or potentially harmful activities incident to a sports event. User further agrees, for him/herself and Minors, that [list of all legal entities and their agents, etc., that one might sue] are not liable for injuries or loss of/damage to property resulting from such causes.

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Not real estate related but... Baseball tickets always include some form of the following:

 

User [the ticket holder] assumes, for him/herself as well as each minor in the charge of such User (“Minors”), all risk and danger incidental to the game of baseball, whether occurring prior to, during, or subsequent to the playing of the game, including but not limited to the risk of injury by thrown or broken bats or fragments thereof, thrown or batted balls, or items thrown or injuries otherwise caused by other spectators, and other hazardous or potentially harmful activities incident to a sports event. User further agrees, for him/herself and Minors, that [list of all legal entities and their agents, etc., that one might sue] are not liable for injuries or loss of/damage to property resulting from such causes.

 

 

Then there's the answer, even if it's simply a printed waiver typically declared for consumer goods and services.  Whether or not it would be successfully challenged is a different story.

-==-

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  • 2 months later...

This is what I posted to Lexy's facebook earlier....my comments in response to Lexy's general disappointment with the stadium:

 I went to a game last Tuesday, and it confirmed what I already thought. It looks like a AA ballpark. It's really not bad, just not what it could or should be. It's an upgrade over Greer, for sure. But for a modern ballpark in a city like Nashville, it's subpar. 

I dislike the exterior design, especially at the main entrance (as shown). I don't like the use of building materials (I think that's some sort of ceramic cladding they used there)....I would have preferred brick.

When I think of urban ballparks, I think of red brick and exposed steel....painted either black, grey, or my favorite, dark green. To me, the best examples of good ballparks in our region are in Memphis and Birmingham. Both of those have modern parks with very classic baseball architecture. There is nothing wrong with modern, per se, but this is a half-assed attempt. I like the original rendering of the plan for the thermal site better.

The interior of the stadium is a bit better. It's not perfect by any means, but the club level bar is nice, and the seats are comfortable. The field is nice as well (as should be expected), and I am a fan of the giant LED guitar scoreboard. Where they screwed up is with the bullpens, which are literally on the field, with no barrier at all (and at the game I attended, low and behold, a wild pitch from the bullpen made it on the field, forcing the umpires to call time.

My last complaint has to do with the general layout of the stadium. It is pointed south, directly at downtown. While this seems cool from the perspective of having a downtown view for all of the fans, I would have much preferred home plate to the pitcher's mound to be oriented southeast, with the front entrance at the corner of 5th and Jackson. Not only would that square the stadium to the block, but there wouldn't be so much wasted space (yes, it's green space within the stadium fence)...and I'm not going to call it "suburban", but it does not evoke the feel of an urban ballpark layout. If they had squared the block, fans would still have a view of downtown, and there would be enough space in left field for some type of development....a 5-6 story brick hotel with a stadium view, and patio or balcony bar overlooking the stadium would've been a fantastic addition. I also think the Sounds development north of the stadium should have complete street level retail....it would be the perfect spot for some neighborhood bars and restaurants to really give it a "bigger than minor league" feel. 

In the end, I do blame Karl Dean for rushing this development through with a hasty construction schedule. It's not well thought out. It could have been so much more if it were opening next year, and more thought had been put into the design and layout.

I'm not saying I'll never go to a game there again. I probably will. When I get free tickets. Nothing compels me (especially when the team stinks) to attend a game with a so-so ballpark experience.

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This is what I posted to Lexy's facebook earlier....my comments in response to Lexy's general disappointment with the stadium:

Well qualified reservations in the "editorial", as it were.  Yet another Karl Dean bungling in terms of hasty and ram-rod planning, even when intentions are great.  I can only imagine similar results and long-term repercussions of at least one other unmentionable high-budget project, had it actually come to fruition.
-==-

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I agree that it was shoved through and is by no means an ideal design, however I don't get all the negativity towards the experience at the park. I, personally, found it to be quite a bit of fun, and plan on making it a regular event when I'm in town.

I'm not "double-faced" here, and a agree with the comment segments fro which I can share first-hand.  I don't have a right to critique the experience, because I have never attended a game at that park. (in fact, I haven't even been to a Triple-A game in recent years, period, the last one being to see the Tides at former Met Park, when I lived in Norfolk.)  I'm just most concerned about how such a brain-child of a project got rushed through with same ol' song-n-dance politiX.  The city really had no latitude to do otherwise because of it.
-==-

Edited by rookzie
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I think the park is wonderful and exactly what a neighborhood ballpark should be. It is easy to get around in, every seat has a great view and it didn't cost the city a fortune. Sure we could have spent $20 million more and gotten something better, but I do not think that would have passed. And the view of downtown is what makes the park so awesome to me!

 

I am really blown away by the park as a whole and cannot wait until all the apartments come to fruition over the next few years in this area.

They could have designed the park better and developed more of the block instead of having the stupid due south orientation. Building materials aside, just the simple change in orientation would make a world of difference.

It was a half baked plan. No time was given to debate or even discuss the merits of the design. It had to be done RIGHT THEN. So you get what we got....a middle of the road AA ballpark.

I agree that it was shoved through and is by no means an ideal design, however I don't get all the negativity towards the experience at the park. I, personally, found it to be quite a bit of fun, and plan on making it a regular event when I'm in town.

Well, part of the negativity towards the experience has to do with the dumpster fire trainwreck of a team that has been fielded. LOL. But that happens. Can't control what the parent team is doing with their prospects.

But yes, the "interior experience" isn't bad. Like I said, the field is nice (except for the stupid bullpens), the seats are comfortable, and I do love the guitar scoreboard. 

I don't mean to imply that you can't have fun at the games....but rather as my first experience up close and personal with the stadium and it's design. That's where the majority of the negativity comes from. Sitting in the stands, watching the game, drinking a beer, hanging with friends, checking out some of the interior features (like the stage in right field, the game area, etc), yeah, you can have a good time. I think a lot of my first experience was spent thinking of what this park could have been....and it fell woefully short.

I'm not "double-faced" here, and a agree with the comment segments fro which I can share first-hand.  I don't have a right to critique the experience, because I have never attended a game at that park (in fact, I haven't even been to a Triple-A game in recent years, period, the last one being to see the Tides at former Met Park, when I lived in Norfolk.  I'm just most concerned about how such a brain-child of a project got rushed through with same ol' song-n-dance politiX.  The city really had no latitude to do otherwise because of it.-==-

That's the main beef. Thoughtful input from the council and citizens of Nashville could have really done wonders for this site. Better design, better orientation, better development around the stadium. But it seemed that only two parties were ever involved with this (well, 3, if you count the state and granting the land) -- the Sounds ownership and the Dean administration.

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In regards to the bullpen being on the field, I honestly don't see a big issue with it. Sure, if it were a major league park, it would be outlandish, but from my limited experience in minor league parks, it's quite standard. There may be the occasional stoppage or play from an errant ball, but it's not often. It keeps the players in the fans vision and makes it feel more personal. 

 

I can totally agree with any criticism of the exterior design of the park, but as far as the interior fan experience, I think it's top-notch. In fact, the forethought to have the outfield bar and lawn game area was brilliant of the designers and the club. They realize that people attending a Sounds game is more about the social experience and less about the on-field product. 

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I love the new ballpark and the experience. I went four times this summer. Cheap seats, good views of the field, and a fun atmosphere. I really like going before the game and spending the afternoon downtown, in Germantown, on the b-cycles, etc. I think the park looks fine both inside and outside but Im not a huge architecture critic unless I think something is just really ugly. For example, this weekend I remember thinking how ugly the Clarion Inn was...  https://www.choicehotels.com/tennessee/nashville/clarion-hotels/tn707?source=gglocaloz1

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Cons: It was fast tracked.

         Lack luster design.

         Could have been bigger

 

Pros: Better than what we had.

         Filled in some dead space.

         It was a catalyst for that area.

         If it had not been fast tracked, we would have likely lost the Sounds and then the park.

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