Daytona Beach, FL - Expect that new turf smell soon at Historic Jackie Robinson Ballpark.
During last night's (December 5th) meeting, the Daytona Beach City Commission approved a new synthetic turf at the Jack to the tune of nearly $1 million, one which will be used primarily for Daytona Tortugas and Bethune-Cookman University baseball games.
Astro Turf Company - a Georgia-based company - will install the artificial surface for $938,391, according to documents posted with the meeting agenda.
City officials say the current playing surface doesn't meet Minor League Baseball standards and the new turf should resolve any lingering player safety concerns.
It's also expected to be a much more durable surface than the current grass field, making it better suited to handle additional community events at the city-owned facility.
The money to cover the costs will come from a $355,000 grant from the Racing and Recreational Facilities District, with the remaining $583,391 being pulled from a city capital project fund.
Installation is scheduled to start next week and the work should be done by March 1st, around a month before Opening Day.