SEATTLE — The Seattle Mariners will spend $55 million to upgrade T-Mobile Park and get rid of the old press box at the same time.
On Wednesday, the M's will announce plans for a complete renovation of the Diamond Club and press area behind home plate, which will be replaced by new premium areas and a new media area. The renovations will all be privately funded and not part of the allocated funds from the King County lodging tax.
The capital improvements come on top of more privately financed improvements - at the old Pyramid Brewing site west of the stadium - to enhance the ballpark and Seattle's SODO neighborhood.
The Mariners said they hope to have the renovations completed in time for the All-Star Game at T-Mobile Park in 2023.
The Diamond Club, which has been a draw for corporate and business clients since the inception of the ballpark in 1999, will be overhauled and expanded beneath the lower bowl of the stadium to a total of 13,000 square feet.
The press box will be gutted and turned into a premium space, with the media work area relocated further down the third baseline. There will be seating for 200 guests with a full view directly behind home plate. Some of that work is already underway.
$55 million in renovations to be made to T-Mobile Park
"We are now focusing on over-due improvements to the premium guest experience," said Mariners President of Business Operations Catie Griggs in a prepared statement. "By updating and expanding the Diamond Club and creating the new Press Club, we are responding to our fans' requests, and we are meeting our lease obligation to ensure our premium offerings keep pace with what is available in the Seattle market and in professional sports in general."
The press box will still be on the Terrace Club level, but reduced to 104 seats. It is expected to open midway through the 2022 season.
The Mariners are obligated, under the terms of their current lease signed in 2018, to make significant capital upgrades to the ballpark. The team claims it will spend $100 million in the first decade of the deal.
The M's start their home season on Friday against the Houston Astros.