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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. The Virginia Athletics Department has announced plans to enhance and renovate The Park, home of the Cavalier softball team. Construction is underway and the second phase of this project is expected to be completed this fall. The goal of the project is to create a top-level playing field and facility.

“This project is in keeping with the athletics department’s goals to provide high quality facilities for our teams,” said Executive Associate Director of Athletics Jon Oliver. “The work being done at The Park and in the softball locker room is designed to provide the team with improved facilities in which to prepare for competition and play games.”

Upgrades at The Park include a new playing surface consisting of Patriot Bermuda grass. Renovations will also create a new drainage and irrigation system. The dimensions of the field will also be slightly altered and increase to 210-220-210.

Other renovations include new dugouts, bullpens and a second batting cage. Additionally, a new scoreboard and fence will be added. The Virginia softball team will also see its locker room, housed in University Hall, undergo a facelift. The locker room renovation includes new custom lockers and audio-visual capabilities.

“The renovations at The Park are a sign of the administration’s strong commitment to Virginia softball,” said Eileen Schmidt, head softball coach. “The enhancements that will be complete by the 2009 season will help our student-athletes on a daily basis and improve the spectator experience at the Park.”

The first phase of the project was the installation of lights at The Park. This phase was completed prior to the 2008 season.

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