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Kansas City MLB Urban Youth Academy


The Kansas City MLB Urban Youth Academy is expected to serve the community for generations. The City of Kansas City, Major League Baseball and the Kansas City Royals partnered to turn an old park into the site of an indoor training facility, four state-of-the-art outdoor diamonds and more.

Insulated metal panels (IMPs) from Metl-Span encase the indoor facility with a durable wall panel in an attractive array of colors.

“The insulated metal panels worked best for helping maintain a consistent temperature and reducing heating and cooling costs,” says Kedra Burcham, project engineer for JE Dunn Construction of Kansas City. “The Royals like the look of the metal panels and the city requested to add some stone accents for a consistent look with the surrounding neighborhood. The great thing about the insulated metal panels is they are a one-step process. Once the panels are in place, that’s the wall, insulation and all.”

The Kansas City MLB Urban Youth Academy has quickly become a busy place. Everyone involved in the project is proud of the outcome.

“It’s definitely going to be the flagship project for us when we redo our website,” says Brian Cannon, project manager at Cannon Building Systems of Kansas City. “We’re very proud to have been a part of the MLB Urban Youth Academy project.”

The $19 million project was funded through private and public investments. It transformed a 21-acre park into a complex that includes the lighted baseball diamonds and training facilities, a playground with basketball courts and a walking trail. The Academy is partnering with the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kansas City to help support the local Reviving Baseball in the Inner Cities programs.

The Academy hopes to serve 800-1,000 baseball and softball players per year, ages 6-18, providing free year-round instruction and play. Kansas City-based Populous Group was the lead architect for the project and the Royals will pay for the operation of the academy. Other cities with MLB academies are Cincinnati; Compton, CA; Houston; New Orleans; Philadelphia; Washington, D.C.; Dallas and San Francisco.

The indoor training facility was constructed by Cannon Building Systems. The metal building steel framing was covered with insulated metal panels, all with a 26-gauge Galvalume exterior with a Light Mesa finish and 22-gauge Galvalume interior, also with a Light Mesa finish. Interior panels are all Igloo White, while the exterior panels are Regal Gray (10,897 square feet), Tundra (6,057 square feet), Colonial Red (250 square feet) and Regal Blue (4,831 square feet). Some of the outer walls are covered with murals representative of baseball history in Kansas City.

Cannon Building Systems also installed soffits in Regal Gray to match the IMPs, as well as roofing and gutters. “It was just a great project to be a part of,” Cannon says. “The IMPs look great. The white interior help make the place bright and offer an attractive contrast with the blue safety pads on some walls. The variety of colors on the exterior panels really make the building stand out.”

About Metl-Span

Metl-Span-logoMetl-Span, a Nucor company, manufactures insulated metal wall and roof systems for projects ranging from architectural to cold-storage. To learn more, visit

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