KANNAPOLIS -- As the Kannapolis Sports and Entertainment Venue takes shape, the Kannapolis Intimidators are focused on fan safety.
The Intimidators announced they purchased protective netting that will extend the entire length of the seating grandstand.
The Intimidators parent club the Chicago White Sox unveiled extended netting last month.
Many major and minor league baseball teams have recently increased netting coverage to ensure a safer experience for fans sitting closest to the field.
Intimidators officials said the extended netting benefits fans by avoiding errant balls and even players’ bats.
Populous, the architecture firm that designed the Kannapolis ballpark, developed the netting to significantly exceed industry standards from their first drawings with the blessing of the City of Kannapolis.
“It's a delicate balance to create an intimate game experience for our fans while safeguarding their safety," Intimidators General Manager Matt Millward said. "We are excited for spectators to enjoy Kannapolis professional baseball without the risk of hard-hit balls and errant bats reaching the seating bowl."
The City of Kannapolis and general contractor Barton Malow Company awarded the netting and padding to Sportsfield Specialties, also known as Promats Athletics, an industry leader with a hub in Salisbury, NC.
Officials said it Ultra-Cross Dyneema netting product combines a thin gauge ideal for a clear view of the action on the field with incredible strength to shield fans from moving objects.
The netting measures 30 feet high and stretches from behind home plate to the top of both dugouts and averages another 60 feet of net coverage beyond both dugouts.