Doosan Bears manager Lee Seung-yeop shares his thoughts on Seoul’s plan to build the Jamsil Dome Stadium. “It should be a ballpark where not only Doosan fans but also visiting fans can enjoy a pleasant viewing experience,” Lee said.
Seoul Mayor Oh Se-hoon, who is on a business trip to North America, visited the Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on the 17th (KST) and explained the plans to build the Jamsil Dome Stadium. The Rogers Centre is the home of the Toronto Blue Jays, where the “Korean Monster” Ryu Hyun-jin currently plays.
Mayor Oh said, “It’s not only about watching baseball, but it’s also a place where families and others can gather and enjoy themselves, so it feels like a festival. This is possible because the hotel is connected to the dome ballpark.” “We are also considering building a dome ballpark in connection with the hotel to make baseball a festival like this,” he said.
The ‘Jamsil Dome Ballpark’ is part of the ‘Jamsil Sports and MICE Complex Development Project’, which is a private investment project, and the Seoul Metropolitan Government is currently finalizing plans to build a dome ballpark with the preferred bidder for the project, Seoul Smart MICE Park (tentative name – Hanwha Corporation). It is planned to be the largest dome stadium in Korea with more than 30,000 seats, capable of hosting international matches in a closed structure rather than an open one.
The Jamsil Dome Stadium will be built on the site of the current Jamsil Baseball Stadium. The city aims to finalize the implementation agreement by the end of next year, play games at the existing Jamsil Baseball Stadium through the 2025 season, break ground in 2026, and complete construction by the end of 2031.
The problem is that the home teams, the LG Twins and Doosan Bears, will have to play six seasons elsewhere while construction is underway. The biggest challenge will be how to meet the needs of fans who want to see LG and Doosan play home games for six years.
Doosan and LG have proposed renovating Jamsil Stadium to create a 17,000-seat temporary ballpark, but the Seoul Metropolitan Government has balked, citing crowd safety concerns. Alternatives include Mokdong Stadium, formerly used by the Nexen (now Kiwoom) Heroes, Gocheok Sky Dome, Suwon Katie Wise Park, and Incheon SSG Landers Field.
For now, the two clubs have decided to form a joint task force with the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO). There aren’t many examples in professional sports of teams using alternate stadiums for relocation. In 2020, Ryu Hyun-jin’s Toronto Blue Jays left their home stadium and moved to Buffalo, New York, but that was a temporary solution due to the difficulty of traveling between the U.S. and Canada for major league players due to COVID-19.
In soccer, Tottenham Hotspur of the English Premier League, where Son Heung-min plays, used an alternative stadium. Tottenham planned to demolish the White Hart Lane stadium they used until the 2016/17 season and build a new stadium on the same site. As a result, they moved out of North London and used the historic 90,000-capacity Wembley in northwest London as their temporary home from September 2017 to February 2019.
When asked about Seoul’s new stadium project before the Jamsil NC game on the 19th, Lee Seung-yeop was careful not to talk about sensitive issues, but emphasized that fan convenience is the most important thing. He said that baseball fans should be able to watch Doosan and LG games comfortably during the construction of the dome.스포츠토토
“I’ve seen a lot of articles, but we are in the position of playing baseball. The most important thing is that people who come to watch baseball should be comfortable.”
“Overall, it should be a good environment. Nowadays, the spectator culture is very mature and has developed a lot, so we have to consider those people. In particular, Seoul is a special city, so we can’t just think about our Doosan Bears fans. A lot of opposing teams come up, and there are a lot of away fans as well, so we have to make sure they are comfortable,” he emphasized.