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Bids sought to turn Morenzone into baseball field

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Bids sought to turn Morenzone into baseball field

Morenzone Field is being converted for baseball play.

HIME ROMERO/The Bulletin/

POSTED August 18, 2014 12:17 a.m.

Morenzone Field — created originally for adult softball — is being converted to accommodate 13- to 15-year-old Little League baseball play.

The Center Street field west of Union Road and immediately south of the golf course parks maintenance yard is projected to cost $510,000 to convert. The City Council is expected to call for bids when they meet Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Civic Center, 1001 W Center St.

The work includes removing the existing backstop, dugouts and fencing and expanding the field area, Improvements include fencing, scorekeeper’s booth, dugouts, bullpens, site furnishings, a 30-foot tall backstop, and a 50-foot protective netting to prevent baseballs from leaving the field. The netting will help reduce city liability.

There will also be concrete walkways added and restroom upgrades to assure they meet Americans with Disabilities Act requirements.

The infield will be modified for 90-foot base lines and new bleachers installed.

Mayor Willie Weatherford and Councilman Vince Hernandez met with leaders from the city’s three Little Leagues — Northgate, Spreckels, and Manteca — over the past several years to discuss the project.

Converting the lighted field for baseball play has been talked about for years. When Big League Dreams was being pursued to accommodate adult softball, the city council at the time indicated the long-range plan was to make Morenzone available for baseball since the softball use would shift. The BLD sports complex has been open now for nearly seven years.

Projects that were bumped to make the renovation possible included exercise stations at Woodward Park.

The fees that would be used were collected from new growth specifically for parks and recreation projects.

The bid opening is tentatively set for Sept. 18.

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