AUSTIN EDITION - Progress continues at baseball complex

By Roxana Orellana

Construction on the baseball complex at Riverland Community College continues.

Four ball diamonds are being built in an effort to bring more tournaments to town. With four fields in the same vicinity, the city hopes the teams and fans the facility draws will create an economic impact.

"With that many people playing, the impact could be heavy," said Dennis Maschka, parks and recreation director.


The new complex will be an alternative to flood-prone Marcusen Park and will offer more scheduling options for the Austin Packers, the American Legion team, Riverland College and other baseball teams in the city.

The Austin City Council gave the project $68,000 in September 2000.

Volunteers have helped with the project by laying sod, building dugouts and inserting 8,000 green slats into the outfield fence.

Still remaining to be completed are the lights, a concession stand, restrooms, a storage facility and the stadium.

"We'd like to get the electrical, the sewer run out there and maybe light at least one diamond," Maschka said.

The grandstand will be put in place next year. It will have 482 seats and will be handicapped-accessible. Two of the fields will have smaller bleachers to seat around 75 people.

The project was planned as a five-year development, but it will probably take an extra year to finish, according to Maschka.

Funding has come from several sources, including $100,000 from the college and $150,000 from the Hormel Foundation.


Total cost of the project is about $325,000.

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