Busch Stadium II last hosted a game nearly five years ago, but the memories and promise of her demise are still the black eye that the St. Louis Cardinals would rather you not talk about.
Ballpark Village, through an amalgamation of factors, has now been permanently shelved. So in honor of the city’s most famous ditch, let’s take a pictorial journey through the trials and tribulations this grandiose civic flop has endured.
She didn’t have multiple levels of luxury suites and she didn’t have other super premium novelties like “flushing toilets” or “elevators”, but she had history. History with me.
It’s still hard for me to believe that she’s gone and that my future kid will never understand what it’s like to have an affinity for a cookie-cutter, hastily made stadium that houses the Cardinals. Wait, nevermind.
This image shows how the stadiums (Busch II and Busch III) overlapped. The Cardinals began construction on the new stadium while the old one was still in use. After the 2005 season, they tore down Busch II to finish the current stadium in time for the 2006 season.
The half a stadium you see in this picture was the proposed site of the new Ballpark Village project.
“Oooo, that’s purdy” was the No. 1 thing heard by the Cardinals when they commissioned these fancy pants drawings of what the project would look like. Skyscrapers with apartments overlooking the field. Mixed-used businesses and office space that wouldn’t be all cheese dick-but real classy. Probably a new Applebee’s! I mean it was going to be heaven, man. Heaven!
I think that this is where Jesus will come back too. I'm so excited to see him!
Now? Well now it’s the eyesore that won’t go away. The next few slides are going to be jarring to some and pretty in-line with how the rest of the nation pictures St. Louis.
That's a rubble patch. As you can see, some of the celebratory bunting hung on the fence has been torn back. St. Louisans love getting glimpses of rubble.
Another huge water hole on the other end of the land. In all fairness, this lake used to be about 3X bigger and they've done a pretty good job of keeping the drain water to "pond sizes."
The All-Star Game in 2009 brought renewed hope that the Cardinals would get on the ball and start turning this real estate into something the city can be at least not ashamed of when the world was looking. Yes! I think I see some progress! That’s a new softball field out in the distance!
Fail. It’s pretty hard to get excited for a softball diamond when the infield is made with quicksand that requires big boards to stand on. Why not just pour some asphalt down?
When in doubt- pave it and charge for parking. It's only temporary, though. The DeWitt's promise!
In summation, it looks like the Cubs planned this epic fail. We’ll keep you posted on any hole related news in the next few years.