By Zach Gewelb
Things are about to get a little safer at Citi Field.
The New York Mets revealed Friday plans to install additional protective netting at Citi Field. The expansion more than triples the square footage of existing netting, according to the team, and is expected to be completed by July 14 when the Mets host the Colorado Rockies.
The expansion was not a necessity, as the ballpark’s existing netting meets Major League Baseball’s recommended guidelines, but is being added in an effort to make spectators safer.
The netting will expand the 30-foot high netting behind home plate beyond the dugouts and to the ends of the camera wells near aisles at Sections 111 and 124. Additionally, an eight-foot high netting will be added the far ends of the camera wells along the foul lines.
“The decision to proceed with these enhancements follows diligent exploration and study with MLB over the past two seasons,” the team said in a statement. “Fan safety continues to be our top priority and using this technology will offer state-of-the-art protection for our fans while minimizing the impact on their viewing experience.”
The expanded netting won’t block fans’ vision because, as it uses enhanced technology to increases transparency. The material is reportedly 97 percent invisible.
The Mets also plan to expand netting at their minor league facilities in Brooklyn, Port St. Lucie, Fla. and Kingsport, Tenn., and are in discussions to add the netting at their Double-A stadium in Binghamton, N.Y.
Reach reporter Zach Gewelb by e-mail at zgewe