On Monday evening, at approximately 5:25 PM PST, the 76-year-old Civic Stadium of Eugene, Oregon was laid to rest as a blaze of fire engulfed the majority of the stadium and the infield. No one was reportedly injured as result of the fire.
Reports state the fire started in between home plate and the press box directly located behind home plate.
Fire crews soon responded to the stadium but the fire spread quickly and had already engulfed the majority of the grandstand. Fire trucks set up a perimeter around the stadium and evacuated nearby homes and businesses within a two block radius of the stadium as a precaution. The fire did not spread outside the Civic Stadium property.
Onlookers from the surrounding South Eugene neighborhood soon gathered around a staple of the community’s landscape in pure amazement. One onlooker said “I grew up with Civic,” while many others took to their cellphones to gather the last remaining images of the crumbling stadium.
Civic Stadium was recently purchased by the Eugene Civic Alliance this past March with intentions to renovated the stadium built by the Works Progress Administration from a ballpark to a multi-use stadium with Lane United FC, a soccer team playing in the USL PDL, slated as one of the major tenants.
According to the Eugene Civic Alliance, stadium renovations were slated to begin next month with plans for a new stadium in limbo with a full report of the damage still yet to be finished.
The cause of the fire is still unknown. According to Eugene Fire Chief Randall Groves, the hot and dry temperatures in Eugene are an unlikely cause of the fire. Groves hopes to have more information on the fire in the next few days but says “this will take a while to investigate,” according to former Lane Today sports reporter Joseph Hoyt.
We will have more as this story develops.