Architects: HOK Sport, Devrouax & Purnell Architects/Planners Nationals Park
In Dec. 2004, DC and MLB agreed to a public financing package to build a 41,888-seat baseball stadium, allowing the former Expos to move to DC. In Feb. 2006 the DC City Council capped the city's expenditures on the project at $611 million, though land acquisition and other costs eventually drove the price tag to $693 million. The stadium, dubbed Nationals Park until naming rights have been awarded, opened officially on March 30, 2008, when the Nationals beat the Atlanta Braves 3-2.
Nationals Home Page | DC Sports and Entertainment Commission | DCBallpark.com
Stadium Construction Webcam (Archived Images)
Stadium RFP | Lease Agreement | Eminent Domain Offers | Demolished Bldgs.
DC CFO's Baseball in DC Page | 2003 Study on Possible Stadium Locations
JD's Stadium News Items & Additional Links

      Stadium Photo Guide and FAQ      Exterior Before and Afters      Inside the Ballpark      Stadium News Items      

Note that most of my photos are taken with a somewhat wide-angle lens--this lens allows me to get much more into a frame to illustrate the changes and progress, but distances and sizes can be distorted. The stadium is huge when you see it in person.

For a far more complete set of before-and-after photos from around the stadium site, use these pages:

The southwestern side of Nationals Park, completed. The Capitol dome (far left) is much more prominent in person. The walkway leading to the Home Plate Gate is a tribute to important dates in the history of baseball in Washington. (5/6/08)  Click to see all available photos of this location.

 

The stadium's southeastern corner and First Base Gate, at First and Potomac, an angle very similar to the rendering at the top of the page, showing the Grand Staircase; at left is a ramp to walk to the upper decks. Note that the stadium is not quite this severely rounded in real life--this was taken with a wide-angle lens. (3/23/08) Click to see all available photos of this location.


The same spot, at dusk, at the end of the ballpark's second season. (9/29/09)


The ballpark, and its famous neighbor, as seen from the Anacostia River. (4/10/10) 

 


The western facade of the ballpark, along South Capitol Street between N and O at what's now called the Left Field Gate. The gap at left, between the western garage and the ballpark, allows for a nice sneak-peek at the scoreboard. And you can also see the new historic lampposts and streetscape improvements along South Capitol. (8/3/08)

 

A wide view of the northern approach to the ballpark, along Half Street, looking at the garages, the Center Field Plaza, and more, as seen on Opening Night. (3/30/08)

 

The eastern facade of the stadium, along First Street at N Place, with a game going on inside. The scoreboard is at center, with the red stars and curly W that are part of the board's clock at left. Retail will eventually go into the ground-floor spaces. (6/5/08) Click to see all available photos of this location.

 


A closeup. (2/9/08)

 


Night time at the Center Field Gate, at Half and N. (9/29/09)

 


With the Douglass Bridge viaduct having been demolished in July 2007, the views looking north on South Capitol Street easily encompass both the ballpark and the Capitol dome. The Administration building is the building at right. (6/5/08)

 

A closer view of the grand staircase. (3/22/08)

 

The walkway to the Home Plate Gate from South Capitol and Potomac, with the important dates in Nats history now laid in the path. (3/22/08)

 


A very wide view of the ballpark's southern facade, as seen at dusk from halfway across the Douglass Bridge. This view, while beautiful, will eventually be lost when the RiverFront development gets built along the river. (6/5/08)

 


The team store, in the ground floor of the western parking garage, at the Center Field Gate at Half and N. Ticket windows are at far right, along with automated kiosks at center. (4/5/08)



Befores-and-Afters:
 


Looking southeast from First Street, between N and N Place, shown here in August 2005. (08/05)

Basically the same location, open for business. See the "1500 South Capitol Street, SE" address now added to the loading dock at right. (5/26/08)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



First and O Streets, looking west. (02/06)


A backed-up view of the same spot, completed. This is the part of the stadium where street-level retail will be offered, and is outside of where the bullpen will be. Note how the lights under the lip of the roof are not visible from outside the stadium. The scoreboard is at right. (5/26/08)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



Swiveling and looking at the east side of the stadium footprint, along 1st Street, from the intersection with Potomac. (02/06)


The same location, completed. (5/26/08)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



A wider shot showing the change along First Street, as seen from a somewhat precarious spot on the Douglass Bridge. The top, in February 2006, has clear views of the Capitol and Library of Congress domes. The bottom, more than two years later, sacrifices those for the stadium, the scoreboard, and 100 M in the distance. At right is Diamond Teague Park and Piers, where limited water taxi service for baseball games began in September 2009. (9/29/09)



Turning west onto Potomac Avenue, at 1st Street. This is the southeastern corner of the stadium site. (03/06)


The same location, completed; P Street is just a memory. Potomac Avenue was cleared and widened in fall 2007. And note the disappearance of the bridge on the far horizon. (1/8/12)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



First Street, at P Street. (02/06)


The same spot, March 2008 (although P Street no longer exists here; this is now Potomac Avenue). This is the southeast corner of the stadium. (3/23/08) Click to see all available photos of this location.



Looking north on Half Street from Potomac Avenue, in June 2005. (06/05)


The same spot, in January 2012. (1/8/12)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



Turning to look east at Potomac Avenue between Half and First, in February 2005. (02/06)


The same spot, in January 2012. (1/8/12)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



Bicycle racks on the south side of the ballpark, along Potomac Avenue. (3/22/08)

 


A comparison shot I was waiting for: this is looking northeast into the South Capitol and Potomac intersection, in April 2006. (04/06)


And the same spot, now a bit different, after the Douglass Bridge makeover in July 2007. (3/23/08) Click to see all available photos of this location.

 


Another view of the ballpark's long facade along South Capitol Street, from the admin building at right to the US Capitol dome at left. The dome is much more prominent in person. (3/22/08)



Standing on the southwest corner of South Capitol and P, looking toward the northeast, in April 2006. (04/06)


The same location, 28 months later, with the viaduct demolished and South Capitol Street reopened. (8/3/08)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



Standing on the northwest corner of South Capitol and P, looking toward the south-southeast, in April 2006. (04/06)


The same location, 28 months later, showing the construction of the admin building attached to the southwestern side of the ballpark. (8/3/08)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



Looking east on O Street from South Capitol, in April 2006. The gay nightclubs on the left side of the street were demolished days after this photo. (04/06)


The same location, 24 months later. (4/11/08) Click to see all available photos of this location.



The southeast corner of South Capitol and P, with the raised South Capitol Street viaduct at right, in April 2006. (04/06)


A slightly different angle of same location, 28 months later, with the viaduct demolished and South Capitol Street reopened, showing how the Administration building attaches to the ballpark. (8/3/08)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



The east side South Capitol Street, south of N Street, in February 2006. (02/06)


A backed-up and slightly shifted version of the same location, 28 months later. A little different. (8/3/08)  Click to see all available photos of this location.


The northwest side of the stadium footprint, looking down South Capitol Street from just north of N Street, in February 2006. (02/06)

The same location, now just about unrecognizable, 89 months into construction; structure at center is the west parking garage. (10/27/13)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



The south side of N Street, as seen from Van Street, in February 2006. The building at right is the Alfred Richards House, one of five residential buildings torn down to make way for the stadium. (02/06)


The same location, completed; the views of the stadium seen for a few months from this location have now been replaced by the western parking garage. (8/1/10)  Click to see all available photos of this location.



The northern side of the stadium footprint, standing on Half Street and looking across N Street, in May 2003. (05/03)


The same location, completed. (5/26/08) Click to see all available photos of this location.



Another shot south across N Street, this time from where Cushing Street will eventually be. This is in May 2006, just before these buildings were demolished. (05/06)


The same location, backed up a bit, 22 months later, with the eastern parking garage beginning to obscure the view of the stadium. (3/23/08) Click to see all available photos of this location.



A stitched-together panorama, this time of the northeast corner of the stadium site at 1st and N Streets, where a trash transfer garage operated for years. (02/06)


A stitched-together view of the same corner, completed, long since demolished, with the stadium looming to the south, with the lovely parking garages completed. (The eastern one here at the corner looks distorted and oversized in this photo.) (3/23/08) Click to see all available photos of this location.


Looking north into the stadium site (through the concrete plant that will someday become RiverFront) from the Douglass Bridge over the Anacostia River, in February 2006. (02/06)

The same location, completed. (1/8/12)  Click to see all available photos of this location.

 


While the stadium is not being built right on the Anacostia River's shore, it is still very close to the water. Here is a view looking north to Near Southeast from Anacostia Park's Poplar Point, in March 2005. The white building at left is part of the Florida Rock concrete operations, and the red brick building at far right is owned by WASA (but may eventually be redeveloped with residential buildings). (03/05)

The same location, 69 after construction began. Note the construction of the knife-edge admin building at far left, and the First Street facade stretching the far right, well past the scoreboard. (1/8/12)  Click to see all available photos of this location.

 


I lost two of my favorite before-and-after locations when the South Capitol Street viaduct was demolished in July 2007. But here the first and last of those shots, which also give a good overhead view of what the ballpark's footprint looked like before the wrecking ball.


Looking northeast from above Potomac Avenue on the South Capitol Street viaduct, in April 2006, a few days before demolition started. (4/2/06)


The same location, five days before the viaduct was demolished, and 14 months into the ballpark's construction. (7/1/2007) Click to see all available photos of this location.

 


P Street east of South Capitol, as seen from the viaduct. (4/2/06)


The same location, five days before the viaduct was demolished, and 14 months into the ballpark's construction. The pillars at front mark the beginnings of the administration building. (7/1/2007) Click to see all available photos of this location.

 


Looking at the stadium site from the Courtyard by Marriott at New Jersey and L, in March 2006. You can see Ft. McNair, Buzzards Point, the Potomac, and Alexandria. (03/06)


The same location, in Sept. 2007. (9/6/07)


But now, 100 M Street blocks the view. (12/10/07) Click to see all available photos of this location.



I post new photos of the stadium site approximately every four weeks. For those who need up-to-the-second coverage of the stadium's construction, visit the Clark/Hunt/Smoot Stadium Construction Web Cam.

For a far more complete set of before-and-after photos from around the stadium site, use these pages:



      Stadium Photo Guide and FAQ      Exterior Before and Afters      Inside the Ballpark      Stadium News Items      




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