SEATTLE — T-Mobile Park will undergo $29.8 million in improvements for the 2020 season.
The work will include 49 infrastructure projects, as well as "fan upgrades." The projects are part of the Seattle Mariners' commitment to spent at least $280 million in the next 10 years to maintain and improve the ball park.
Just over $20 million will be spent on infrastructure improvements to keep the park in working order. That will include replacement of roof wheels and maintenance, replacement of the 20-year-old sound system, replacing point-of-sale systems for concession stands, and ADA improvements.
"Fan upgrades" will total $9.24 million. Those include expanding the Left Field Gate to add 15 additional points of entry, creating a new bar and entertainment space at Lookout Landing, building an elevated rooftop boardwalk above the Home Plate Gate rotunda, and building out a new seating option in the First Base Terrace Club.
The commitment to the upgrades follow the approval of a 25-year lease agreement for the Seattle Mariners to remain at the ballpark at the end of last year.
The lease came at a cost of $135 million from hotel-motel taxes when the King County Council approved a controversial package. The tax collections begin in 2021 after CenturyLink Field is paid off using the revenue stream.
Approval of the spending wasn't unanimous. Initially, the Mariners wanted $180 million in public funding, arguing that ballclub would still be spending millions of its own money on improvements.
King County Executive Dow Constantine signed off on the deal, made between the Mariners and the Public Facilities District Board, which was created to manage the building on behalf of the public.
A compromise was found, which included last-minute amendments to either reduce the funding package or redirect funds toward tourism promotion or homeless services.
The King County Council ultimately voted 5-4 to approve the public funding.