ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have hired the architectural design firm of Dallas-based HKS to design their new ballpark.
The goal is to create a new "benchmark" for new baseball parks in the future with the focus being on an intimate old-style setting for fans.
The new ballpark, scheduled to open in 2020, will still have a retractable roof for climate control. But the emphasis will be on the architectural design rather than making the roof the signature feature of the facility.
"That's the distinguishing feature about other ballparks with a roof," HKS executive vice president Bryan Trubey said. "We want to create a project that is something more authentic and intimate."
HKS was the architect of record for Globe Life Park when it opened as the Ballpark in Arlington in 1994 as well as AT&T Stadium, the home of the Dallas Cowboys. It also designed UT-Arlington's College Park Center.
"Although we love Globe Life Park, there are some things we'd like to take to the new park, like the original architecture," Trubey said. "But there are also some things we'd like to improve upon."
The new park is expected to have a capacity of 42,000, down from 50,000 at Globe Life, in a more intimate setting with fans closer to the field. The main concourses will be inspired by the neighborhood streets that surround older ballparks like Fenway Park and Wrigley Field.
The goal is also to integrate the new ballpark into the Texas Live! project being built adjacent to the facility. Globe Life Park is expected to be renovated as part of the Texas Live! project to create a multipurpose sports and entertainment destination district that will be used year round.
The design process is in the early stages. The final design is expected to be announced later this year along with groundbreaking and the beginning of construction. The final cost of the ballpark is expected to be $1 billion, with the cost being split between the Rangers and the city of Arlington.
"HKS is a first-rate architect firm," Arlington mayor Jeff Williams said. "They know Arlington. This incredible architect firm has really made a statement. The Texas Rangers have high standards. HKS had to prove themselves. They had to come forward with great creativity and knowledge and earn the opportunity to work on the new ballpark."
HKS also designed Miller Park in Milwaukee, the Minnesota Vikings' new U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis and Lucas Oil Stadium, the home of the Indianapolis Colts. It also oversaw the renovations at Dodger Stadium and U.S. Cellular Field -- now Guaranteed Rate Field -- in Chicago.
"We feel very deeply about this project, especially being in Arlington. where we have created different venues," Trubey said.
Trubey said HKS has projects around the world as far away as Perth, Australia, but it also started in North Texas.
"For us to have the opportunity to work on this new venue is one of the highest honors we can achieve," Trubey said.
T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.