In the early spring of 2004, Citizens Bank Park in south Philadelphia opened to the public. It’s the home of the Philadelphia Phillies as part of the South Philadelphia Sports Complex. Much like how Veterans Stadium became “The Vet” and Lincoln Financial Field is referred to as “The Linc,” fans have taken to calling Citizens Bank Park simply “The Bank.”
Citizens Bank Park was built to replace Veterans Stadium, which used to host both football and baseball games, with Major League Baseball's Philadelphia Phillies and the National Football League's Philadelphia Eagles calling it home. Citizens Bank Park, following the lead of beautiful and fan friendly stadiums like Baltimore's Camden Yards, was designed and constructed with baseball in mind. Currently, the venue plays host to solely Phillies ticket holders. If you want to catch a game of baseball live, then book your Citizens Bank Park tickets now.
The wheels for the inception of the Citizens Bank Park were set in motion in the year 1999. That was when the Philadelphia Eagles, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Pittsburgh Pirates joined hands and requested the city to replace the Three Rivers Stadium and the Veterans Stadium with new stadiums.
Then in a game between the Army and the Navy in 1998, a railing at the Veterans Stadium collapsed as a result of which eight people were injured. That unfortunate accident added to the pressure of replacing the stadiums. The Pittsburgh Pirates had already gone a step further in 1997 and given an ultimatum that if the new stadiums were not looked into, they would leave Pittsburgh. Finally, legislations were made to seek out and approve funds for four new stadiums that were being proposed at the time.
There still were a few obstacles to overcome for those plans to become a reality. The City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County did not waste any time in approving the agreements. However, on the other hand, the leadership of Philadelphia carried on debating the proposals. The discussions carried on even after the Heinz Field and the PNC Park were inaugurated in the year 2001. The former was to be the home of the Steelers while the Pirates were to move into the latter.
Finally, an agreement was reached according to which the Philadelphia Eagles agreed to shift to a place that was to the southeast of the Veterans Stadium. There used to be an old warehouse at the location and that is where the Lincoln Financial Field now stands.
The Phillies however wanted a ballpark in the downtown area of the city. As a result of that, quite a few locations were looked into. Those efforts finally led to the franchise and the city announcing that the new ballpark will be constructed at 13th and Vine Street which was just an earshot away from the downtown.
There was a lot of support for the location from the majority of the population but the residents of the Chinatown did not agree to it. To settle the issue once and for all, it was decided that the new ballpark would now be constructed at the South Philadelphia Sports Complex. Just like the Lincoln Financial Field, that site used to have an old food warehouse too. The groundbreaking ceremony was held on June 28, 2001 and the Citizens Bank Park opened its doors for the public for the first time on April 3, 2004.
Facilities for People with Disabilities
The Citizens Bank Park has specifically been designed with people with disabilities in mind. There are special parking spaces for disabled people and they can also be accompanied by companions. A person facing any sort of disability can be accompanied by three people at a time. Access doors all across the ballpark have tactile and visual characters. Not only that, but FM Assisted Listening Devices to amplify the public address system are also available at the Citizens Bank Park. You can get them from the Guest Services located at the Main Concourse just behind Section 121.
All the concession stands can be easily accessed by people in wheelchairs and the guests can also bring in any food items in bags not banned by the MLB. There are also special escalators and elevators for disabled people and the emergency staff has been trained to evacuate them in case of an emergency. In case of medical emergency, feel free to contact the personnel at the ballpark and they will guide you to multiple First Aid stations at the venue.
The Citizens Bank Park also has special guest services, sign interpreters, ramps and restrooms that are accessible by wheelchair. Not only that, but if a person wants to attend a game with a personal care attendant funded by the government, the attendant will get a complimentary ticket. He or she will also get a chair so that they can sit next to the guest they are accompanying.
The Philadelphia Phillies’ Randy Wolf has the distinction of being the first player to throw a pitch at the Citizens Bank Park on April 12, 2004. The batter was D’Angelo Jimenez of the Cincinnati Reds. Bobby Abreu cracked the first HR in the ballpark’s history. Jim Thome etched his name in history books by hitting his four hundredth career HR at the Citizens Bank Park on June 14, 2004.
The World Series came to the ballpark for the first time on October 25, 2008. The Phillies beat the Rays 5-4 in Game 3 of the series that day. The Phillies won the title by defeating the Rays 4-3 in Game 5 to reach the top of the mountain for the first time since 1993. That historic game was played at the Citizens Bank Park too.
In addition to baseball games, Citizens Bank Park has hosted several other events. Concerts at the ballpark have included Jimmy Buffet and The Coral Reefer Band, Billy Joel, Elton John, Bon Jovi, Roger Waters, and Bruce Springsteen. The park also hosted the 2012 NHL Winter Classic, an outdoor hockey game between the New York Rangers and Philadelphia Flyers, in January of 2012.
The park seats over 43,000, perfect for all the different events it hosts.
Getting There and Getting In
Parking & Directions
Traveling to Philadelphia's Citizens Bank Park is incredibly easy. Residents of the city or visitors to the city will often take Philadelphia's Broad Street Line subway south right to the stadium (which is the last stop on the line), and there are also Bus Routes, such as SEPTA's 4 and 17 Bus Routes which can get you to the stadium.
For those driving to the stadium from different areas both in and outside of the city limits, Citizens Bank Park has detailed directions available and also has large parking lots available for both parking and pregame tailgating.