Earlier this week, the Boston Planning and Development Agency approved the $1.6 Billion project that will transform the neighborhood around Fenway Park. Of course, this news was met with lots of “Oh! But you can’t spend that money on the team?!” from lots of Sox fans. And, sure, I guess, but that’s not what this piece is about. Personally, I’m quite excited about the news! New development is, at the end of the day, a pretty good thing. I’ve been following these plans for a few years now, so I’ve had lots of time to think about them, and I’ve got some ideas. I’m not entirely sure why John Henry and Co. haven’t gotten in touch with me yet, but here we go anyway.
An Observation Deck
This one feels like a slam dunk to me. From the looks of the renderings, there will be several high-rise buildings on Jersey Street. This will be a first for the area surrounding Fenway, as the tallest building adjacent to the park now tops out at no more than four stories. What I propose is some type of deck on top of one of those new high rises that can see the field inside Fenway Park. I’m not naive, so I imagine the deck would be ticketed for games, but still! Think of it like a child of the Wrigley rooftops and the Hilton next to Camden Yards. You could even throw parties up there! It could be a hit!
I haven’t really ironed out the details of this one, but frankly, I don’t need to. Every single time I see a highlight from American Family Field (formerly known as Miller Park), I think “Wow. The Red Sox should have a slide.” Just imagine Wally sliding down a handsome green slide after a big home run. It gives me chills. Of course, the Brewers slide is actually in the park, and Fenway Corners is all about the area surrounding it, but it’s just a slide, they can make it work.
Perhaps the coolest thing in baseball is a splash hit into McCovey Cove at Oracle Park. Hitting a baseball and it landing in a body of water? Magical. PNC Park in Pittsburgh has a similar kind of thing with homers into the Allegheny River as well. Even Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati does too if someone became possessed and hit a 600-foot nuke into the Ohio River. My point is, Fenway needs some version of this. My proposal is to turn that decrepit parking garage on Lansdowne into a nice little pond. Yes, it wouldn’t be very peaceful as I-90 would be about fifteen feet away, but think of the splash hits! The rendering has a building in my proposed spot, but again, there’s still time to make adjustments.
A Swimming Pool
Keeping with the body of water theme, how lovely would a swimming pool at Fenway be? I’m not talking about a dinky Chase Field size one, but a real residential-size pool. Maybe bigger! Real estate in Fenway is hard to come by, so I think the roof of the new MGM Music Hall behind right field would be a perfect home for it. Yeah, you couldn’t see the game but who cares! You could leave your seats after the bottom of the fourth, go for a dip, and be back for the bottom of the sixth!
A Touch Tank
And while we’re at it, why not a touch tank?! The Rays have one and we definitely have more money than them! Of course, they have their namesake in their tank, manta rays. I’m not sure soaking wet red socks in our tank would really work the same way... Ya know what? Dump this one, forget about it.
A Raising Cane’s
I just like chicken tenders.
With the integration of these ideas, Fenway Corners should be a smash hit. The project will take some time, but I do truly think it will have a positive effect on Fenway game days.