180 W. Rio Salado
Tempe, AZ 85281
CATEGORY: Historical Properties
YEAR BUILT: 1934
Tempe Beach Stadium is significant for its association with the historical development of Tempe’s first recreation park. A large public pool was constructed under the direction of Niels Stolberg in 1923 on the north side of First Street west of Mill Avenue. In 1927, the city acquired the property from the pool west to the highway at Ash and a band stand was erected using cobblestones. In 1928, a baseball field was laid out in that are to the west. With the construction of the Mill Avenue Bridge, 1929-1931, development of the park continued to shift to the west. In 1934, the Tempe Beach committee, headed by Garfield Goodwin, began construction of a cobblestone wall around the entire park and the development of the stadium bleachers. This use of cobblestones is unique and once extended to all of the park structure. With construction of a new swimming pool in the 1960's, much of this cobblestone work was lost.
This terraced bleacher is built of river cobbles and has concrete benches faced with cobbles. Low walls surrounding the stadium are of cobbles with concrete caps. The front wall is divided into bays by cobble pilasters. The stadium bleachers face east, being constructed into the embankment of the former highway bridge approach.