When Busch Stadium III opened in 2006, the St. Louis Cardinals’ full vision was incomplete. The accompanying area of up to 10 acres, designated for office, residential, retail and entertainment venues, remained stuck in the planning stages for years, hamstrung by the economic downturn.
A much scaled-down Phase I of the Ballpark Village project finally became reality eight years later, with the opening of a dining and entertainment-focused facility for the 2014 baseball season.
Key attractions include FOX Sports Midwest Live!, Cardinals Nation Restaurant and the Budweiser Brew House. Top-level seating areas offer fans a clear view into Busch Stadium from beyond left-field. The Cardinals television network also built a small studio in Ballpark Village, used for pre- and post-game shows.
Another prime destination in Ballpark Village is the Cardinals Hall of Fame and Museum. The fan favorite, which includes a free Hall of Fame gallery and an extensive museum which carries an admission charge, reopened this spring for the first time in six years to enthusiastic crowds.
While it remains to be seen if Ballpark Village can provide a significant year-round boost to downtown development over time, no one can dispute the area’s vitality on game days. The new facility provides a major enhancement to the overall experience of St. Louis Cardinals baseball.