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Phillies New Ballpark embraced by fans with disabilities

PHILADELPHIA, March 11, 2002 - At the second in a series of open dialogue meetings hosted by the Phillies and the New Ballpark Project Team, fans with disabilities enthusiastically embraced plans for the Phillies New Ballpark earlier this month.

The process of meeting with fans with disabilities and interested local advocates began last summer. During this time, the Phillies retained a leading Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) consultant, Kevin McGuire, to help them ensure that the New Ballpark is made universally accessible and comfortable for all fans with disabilities. The purpose of these meetings was to review the New Ballpark design, features and amenities with people who know first hand the needs and challenges of fans with disabilities. The Phillies are committed to incorporating their recommendations and ideas throughout the Ballpark.

At the latest meeting, the Phillies New Ballpark Project Team unveiled specific access accommodations for fans with physical disabilities that were addressed on every level of the New Ballpark - including street level concourse entry, direct field access, box office access, wheelchair and companion seating areas, family bathroom facilities, concessions, suites, club level seating, and mezzanine club level dining area. In all cases, the accommodations met or exceeded the requirements under ADA.

The Phillies New Ballpark Project Team will continue to meet with fans with disabilities to discuss access matters related to patrons with sensory disabilities (e.g., blind/low vision, deaf/hard of hearing), as well as to discuss job opportunities for the disabled.

David Montgomery, General Partner and President of the Philadelphia Phillies said, "The Phillies New Ballpark will be accessible-friendly and accommodating for every fan. People with disabilities are a very important part of our fan base and we want to address specific design concerns and opportunities. We are creating a new experience for our fans and are working very hard to ensure a visit to the Ballpark will be an enjoyable experience."

"The Phillies and the New Ballpark Project Team are first rate," said Kevin McGuire. "Without question they are committed to making the New Ballpark experience a truly memorable one for fans with any type of disability. Every aspect of the design is completely accessible and comfortable - and the sightlines from the seating areas are terrific."

An ADA Coordinator with 18 years experience in accessibility design stated in the meeting, "It is very exciting to see this spirit of inclusiveness and attention to detail. It is a pleasure to learn that the Phillies organization is so proactive in meeting fans with disabilities needs."

Kevin McGuire is chairman and CEO of McGuire Associates, Inc., a consulting firm specializing in assisting organizations in effectively and proactively meeting the standards prescribed by ADA regulations. McGuire Associates has more than 40 cumulative years of disability-related experience, and over 50 years of training expertise. In addition to the Phillies New Ballpark, other projects that McGuire Associates have worked on include: First Union Center, Philadelphia Eagles New Stadium, The Apollo at Temple University, Pacific Bell Park in San Francisco, San Diego Padres New Ballpark, Seattle Stadium & Exhibit Center, American Airlines Center in Dallas, San Francisco 49ers Stadium, CMGI Field in Foxboro, Massachusetts, and Staples Center in Los Angeles.

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