Jul 182012

Camden Yards Seating

Oriole Park at Camden Yards opened for major league baseball on April 6, 1992. It started a new trend in the design and building of major league baseball parks. Camden Yards incorporated many desirable features prevalent in ballparks built in the early 20th century. These features included brick and steel construction, grass and dirt playing surface and a limited seating capacity which makes the fans feel close to the action on the field. Many of the 21 parks built after Camden Yards borrowed from these desirable features.

Camden Yards is an intimate ballpark with a capacity of 45,971, and as fans look to center field, they can see downtown Baltimore through the opening in the center field wall. The most prominent feature of Camden Yards is the sight of the B & O Warehouse building which lies just beyond the right field wall. The warehouse is eight stories high and 1,116 feet long. It is home to the Maryland Stadium Authority and provides office space for the Orioles administration. Eutaw street, which runs between the ballpark and the warehouse, is a pre-game fan gathering place. It is thrilling for fans to see an Orioles player hit a home run over the right field wall toward the warehouse 439 feet from home plate. This has happened 24 times as of the end of the 2011 season, and there are circular plaques cemented into the sidewalk on Eutaw street to mark the place where the home runs landed.

Sight lines for fans watching the game from their seats are generally good. The lower level consists of about 25,000 seats with box seats closest to the field followed by terrace box seats and then reserved seats. The next higher level is the Club level, and this runs between the right field foul pole and left-center field. The Club level includes 61 luxury suites capable of accommodating parties of 14 to 40. The Upper Deck includes 12 rows of box seats and 13 rows of reserved seats, and about half of it is covered with a sun roof. There is also a section called the Eutaw Street Reserve seats, and these are located in the right-center field area. These seats are in high demand, and tickets for them are very hard to get. For the comfort of fans, the Orioles installed wider seats in the Club level and Upper Deck just before the 2011 season.

The Orioles upgraded the electronic entertainment system at Camden Yards before the 2008 season. The upgrades included a video board and a scoreboard located in center field in addition to a right-field scoreboard that gives fans information about other games throughout the major leagues. All of these electronic boards use LED displays that provide clear images that are easy to read from anywhere in the ballpark. The electronic upgrades also included new linear LED auxiliary scoreboards that run along the facade of the Club level and Upper Deck. Before the 2009 season, the club installed new speakers.