Converting an Empty Warehouse into an Indoor Baseball Facility
On Deck Sports has helped open thousands of indoor sports facilities across the country. We recently worked with The Baseball Bank in DuBois, PA to bring an indoor baseball facility to the area.
The Baseball Bank opened in November of 2015 after working with Justin Gordon at On Deck Sports. Gordon – a former professional pitcher – has worked as an indoor facility design expert at On Deck Sports for seven years. His expertise has helped open hundreds of indoor sports facilities with great success. He is also an experienced coach who has been training his teams and giving pitching lessons in multiple indoor facilities for 12 years as part of the East Coast Eagles.
“This [facility] was the only place in the area,” Gordon said after talking with the owners. “So, they wanted to make sure it was a unique, special kind of place.”
After working closely with the Bankovich family, who owns the facility, we were able to help them create that unique baseball environment that the DuBois area craved.
The 9,000 square foot facility started as nothing more than a vision in the mind of the Bankovich family and an empty warehouse. “The project came together in less than 6 weeks,” owner Nicole Bankovich said when asked about the process of opening the new facility. “From the idea, finding a warehouse space, which was is desperate need of cleaning and renovation, working with Justin on the floor plan and equipment order, finding a cleaning company and painter, and finally the installation by the amazing team of Jack and Rick.”
We were able to help design and install the facility on such a quick timeline thanks to our dedicated facility team. We utilize custom plans for each facility that brings a simple drawing to life with detailed renderings – showing the facility owners exactly what they are getting. We also have a project management team that works closely with our team of installers to ensure a quick, efficient installation process.
Gordon worked with the Bankovich family to optimize the warehouse area. We installed PM34 turf, a custom shell net batting cage and training equipment to create the ideal baseball training facility. The decision to go with PM34 came due to its durability, feel and price point. It costs just $2.35 per square foot and is soft enough to use as a full field. Players can slide on the turf, coaches can kneel on the turf and the ball takes a natural bounce off of it compared to some other turf options.
PM34 is also very easy to clean and can be glued down 100% to prevent any slipping. It pairs perfectly with the Batting Mat Pro in hitting lanes to extend the life of the turf. It also allows for portable pitching mounds to be used without sliding.
The facility got its name from a family nick name (the Bankovich boys go by “Bank”) and operates under the slogan of “Invest In Your Game”. Sticking with the bank theme, they have a “Who Cashed In?” wall that allows players who have trained at the facility to come in and record home runs they hit in their games on the wall.
They have players from professional teams, local colleges and high schools who have all “cashed in” with homers after training at The Baseball Bank.
They have six batting and pitching lanes, stocked with equipment from On Deck Sports. We also supplied them with the Batting Mat Pro for batting practice, ProMounds ProModel portable pitching mounds for pitching practice and Premium Series L-Screens for protection during practice. We also helped set up a gym area with rubber flooring to help maximize the effectiveness of the space.
The ability to supply the turf, netting, equipment and installation from one source helps make the entire process of completing a facility much easier and more streamlined.
In the new space, we saw an opportunity for the sixth cage, and Bankovich trusted our design to bring an extra training area into The Baseball Bank. We saw an area away from the full shell cage that was left empty during training sessions. “Instead of leaving that as an empty space, we decided to add a smaller cage to create a soft-toss area, or a tee work area,” Gordon said.
“These people are paying by the square foot. When you pay by the square foot, you’re not only paying for the turf and the netting – but you’re paying for the space you are using. We want to maximize the space and use every bit we can.” This addition allows for The Baseball Bank to have side training sessions while their batting cages are opened up for full field training – a feature that most facilities cannot boast.
The Baseball Bank has opened to very good success, and the Bankovich family is happy to have brought an indoor baseball facility to the area.
“We are very proud of the facility we created with the help of On Deck Sports,” Bankovich said. “And it is a very popular place for the players in our area. We have many comments we could offer – most importantly that we could not have even dreamed of the end product without the design and installation services of On Deck Sports.”