Future plans for old Tinker Field site debated

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City leaders leveled Tinker Field when they renovated the Citrus Bowl.  The stadium stood next to where the bowl is.  The question now is how to preserve the iconic field’s history for future generations.  Tinker Field hosted baseball and social meetings for more than one hundred years.   Jackie Robinson and Martin Luther King, Jr. both made appearances there.  Now city leaders are taking input from residents for a historic monument about the torn down field.

Walter Hawkins is Director of Urban Development with the city of Orlando. “We want to make sure this process is involving our citizens and not just government officials or people who are involved, but to have citizens give their input.” 

City staff and residents met Tuesday night in Parramore to share ideas.  The city showed monument renderings.  One design features a circular display with a baseball statue in the center.  Another one features an archway. 

Residents like Sandra Alston posted their ideas on sticky notes on the boards.  She said, “I like the archway. I think that’s a good idea.”

Angela Hill shared her thoughts. “I like the arch, and I prefer they would not allow parking on the field.”

Commissioner Regina Hill requested a meeting with the city venues department on whether or not parking will be permitted on Tinker Field.   She also asked city leaders to give residents one more week to fill out a memorial survey on the city’s website.

Hill said, “We will commemorate Tinker Field in a way that is appropriate for all the city residents, not just one group of people within the city.”

City staff will consider residents’ suggestions to come up with a basic memorial design.   There will be another public meeting in October or November, and the city council will approve a final design.