Eau Claire (WQOW)- Big upgrades could be coming to Eau Claire's historic Carson Park Baseball Stadium. The Eau Claire Plan Commission voted in favor of the upgrades Monday.
The upgrades would include permanent bleachers built on both the first and third baselines to replace the more than 50-year-old movable bleachers currently in use. They would seat nearly 1,000 people, with nearly 40 seats designated for fans with disabilities.
The project also calls for larger dugouts, new climate-controlled restrooms, as well as retail space.
"I've been going to baseball games there since the 1950s," Plan Commission Secretary Terry Pederson said. "You take a blanket with you and sit on those bleachers. They still get hard. There's no backs to them. This is going to be nice and comfortable, and I think it's a great improvement."
On top of concerns about age and accessibility, Eau Claire Senior Planner Pat Ivory said the current 56-year-old bleachers pose risks.
"They're in poor shape. In addition, the bleachers are open underneath, so there's always the possibility that someone could fall through the bleachers," Ivory said. "It really is a safety issue."
The Carson Park Capital Campaign Renovation Committee is helping to fund the project. Right now, officials said they are $700,000 short of their $3 million goal.
The plan now moves on to the Eau Claire City Council, which will consider the upgrades next week. You can make donations here.