PETCO Park is an open-air stadium in downtown San Diego,
California. Opened in 2004, it replaced Qualcomm
Stadium as the home park of the San Diego Padres. The stadium is named
after the pet food retailer PETCO, which is based in San Diego and paid
for the naming rights (since the retailer spells its name in all capital
letters, the spelling "Petco Park" is not correct).
Field Line - 334 ft
Left Field - 367 ft
Left Field Alley - 402 ft
Center Field - 396 ft
Right Field Alley - 411 ft
Right Field - 382 ft
Right Field Line - 322 ft
Backstop - ? ft
The construction cost of over $450 million was partially funded by the
Centre City Development Corporation, the San Diego Redevelopment Agency,
and the stadium is intended to be part of a comprehensive plan to
revitalize San Diego's aging downtown, particularly the East Village area
east of the Gaslamp Quarter. The stadium is located across Harbor Drive
from the San Diego Convention Center.
PETCO Park differentiates itself from other Major League ballparks
built in the same era by eschewing "retro"-style red brick and
green seats. The stadium is clad in Indian sandstone and stucco; its
exposed steel is painted white and the 42,445 fixed seats are dark blue.
The design is meant to evoke the sandy color of San Diego cliffs and
beaches, the blue of the ocean, and the white sails of boats on the nearby
to PETCO Park!
If you have Google
Earth installed, click here
to be "flown" to the site of PETCO Park. (If you do not
have it installed, get
it from Google. It allows you to view virtually anywhere on
Earth in 3D using satellite imagery.)
Architect Antoine Predock's design pulled restaurants, administrative
offices and other amenities away from the seating bowl itself into other
buildings surrounding the bowl. As a result, the ballpark's concourses are
open not only to the playing field but also to the surrounding city.
Unlike most outdoor baseball parks, in which the batter faces in a
northeasterly direction, in this ballpark the batter faces due north, and
fans in the grandstands are treated to a view of San Diego Bay and the San
Diego skyline beyond the left field seats, and a view of Balboa Park,
which contains the San Diego Zoo, beyond center field.
An excellent example of adaptive reuse, the Western Metal Supply
Company Building, a hundred-year old structure that had been scheduled for
demolition to make way for PETCO Park, was saved and incorporated into the
design of the ballpark. The building was renovated and contains the team
store, private suites, a restaurant and rooftop seating. The corner of the
building serves as the left field foul-pole.
The Park at the Park, a grassy berm sloping above the outfield fence,
is open during game time allowing fans to sit and watch games for a small
price. When no games are being played the Park at the Park serves as a
free local park for area residents.
A 30-by-53 foot LED video board, dubbed FriarVision, offers
high-resolution replays and graphics, even in direct sunlight. Atop
FriarVision in the left-field stands is a 34-by-80 foot Matrix scoreboard
displaying animation and cheer graphics, lineups, stats, and game info.
Along the upper concourses are LED fascia video boards showing animation
and graphics. The one along the first-base side is 3 feet by 236 feet
while the third-base side is 3 feet by 252 feet.
A week after the
opening of PETCO, April 15, 2004.
by Kerryl Cacho (Navy)
Fans in concession stands, in bars, restaurants or wandering the stands
can watch the action on 244 high-definition TV monitors and an additional
500 standard-definition TVs. More than 500 computer-controlled speakers
throughout the park deliver the sound as a "distributed signal,"
eliminating the audio delay from a central bank of speakers, such as the
system at Qualcomm Stadium. Four stationary cameras, one roving camera and
use of six Cox-TV cameras provide videos for park's screens.
research by Jim Herdman & David Vincent
Courtesy of Retrosheet.
The official address of PETCO Park is 19 Tony Gwynn Way, in honor of
the eight-time National League batting champion who wore that uniform
number (19) during his entire major league career with the Padres. In the
first game ever played at PETCO park, on March 11, 2004, the San Diego
State University Aztec baseball team, of which Gwynn is the head coach,
notched a victory.
On September 29th, 2005, MLB Announced that PETCO Park would host the
Semi-Finals and the Finals of the 2006 World Baseball Classic.
PETA's Hidden Message
(People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) has had a running battle
with PETCO for several years regarding the purported mistreatment of live
animals at PETCO stores.
When the Padres announced that PETCO (which is based in San Diego) had
obtained naming rights to PETCO Park, PETA was unable to persuade the
Padres to terminate the agreement.
PETA, whose messages often have the subtlety of being hit in the head
with a brick, then attempted to broadcast its message by purchasing a
personalized brick used in constructing part of the stadium. It's first
two messages ("In memory of all the animals who have suffered and
died in PETCO stores nationwide" and "Boycott PETCO") were
rejected by the Padres as unsuitable.
Undaunted, PETA elected to get its message across using subliminal
advertising in the form of an acrostic. It successfully purchased a brick
with what appears on the surface to be a complementary message:
"Break Open Your Cold Ones! Toast The Padres! Enjoy This Championship
Organization!" However, if one takes the first letters of each word,
the resulting acrostic reads "BOYCOTT PETCO". Neither PETCO nor
the Padres have taken any action to remove the brick, stating that if
someone walked by, they would not know it had anything to do with the
PETA/PETCO feud. Indeed, without superfluous paragraphs like these on
Wikipedia and elsewhere, you'd never know Petco was thought by some to be
so abusive to the products they sell.
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