Korea’s first domed baseball park is already well under construction in west Seoul. The stadium is meant to replace Dongdaemun Stadium which was demolished back in 2008 and is being built in Gocheok-dong, Guro (구로구 고척동). Construction began on the stadium in May 2009 and is now estimated to cost up to nearly 76.1 billion won. Though original plans had the completion date set for just two years later in 2011, it was later changed to the very last day of 2013. The IBAP AAA Under 18s Junior Baseball World Cup is being held in South Korea this year and although it was hoped that the tournament could take place in the new stadium, the event has now been moved elsewhere.
The stadium — which doesn’t seem to have been officially named yet, is four stories high, two stories deep, and will be able to hold up to 22,258 spectators. The roof was originally planned as a “half dome” but the design was changed to a “hybrid” full dome. Not only pro baseball games, but amateur baseball and other events such as music concerts will be held at the venue all year round, rain or shine. Accordingly, full heating and air conditioning systems will be installed with some power provided by solar panels on the building in an effort to reduce energy consumption. The dome will also reduce bright lights and crowd noise from disturbing residents nearby.
Only 500 carparks will be provided on-site to encourage the use of public transport. The location of the stadium is ideal for public transport as it is situated on a busy arterial bus route and Guil Station(구일역) on Line 1 is located right behind it. There is currently no direct access from the Guil Station to the stadium side of the stream, a poor design considering the station was built directly over the it. Nevertheless, judging from the path in the top left of the illustration above and construction in the area, it would appear the some sort of direct access from the station is will be built for the masses expected.
The stadium is located directly next to the Anyang Stream (안양천) which I imagine will become a popular spot to sit back with a beer after a game in the summer. Though the stream has a somewhat out of place rural feel thanks to a few veggie and large grass patches along the sides, it will be interesting to see whether the area is developed in a similar way to the Dorim Stream (도림천) by D-Cube City, or left as it is.
An expansion of Gocheok Bridge (고척교) which is directly in front of the stadium was given the go-ahead by Seoul city on February 8. The decision came after concerns that the current road and pedestrian space would be inadequate for future traffic and crowds. The eight lane bridge is to be widened to ten lanes, plus extra room for pedestrians. Plans for the bridge will begin this month and construction will be timed to finish at the same time the stadium opens.