On Monday evening, Foxborough residents voted in favor of the Revolution's plan to expand their Gillette Stadium training facilities.
Revs president Brian Bilello announced the favorable result on Twitter Tuesday morning:
Zoning approval last night in Foxborough paves the way for a major expansion to our training facilities for the 1st team and academy. Really excited for the future and will be sharing plans and timing over the coming weeks.
— Brian Bilello (@RevsPrez) May 15, 2018
BostonSportsJournal.com, however, has the exclusive renderings to the facility for subscribers.
The design is only conceptual, as the Original Ten club still has to go through the permitting process with the town. Construction on the facility is expected to start this year.
"(The designs) are pretty close to what we think the final layout will be," Revolution communications director Kaitlin Alden said in an email to BostonSportsJournal.com on Tuesday.
New England currently holds a majority of its practice sessions on a fenced-in grass pitch nestled in a wooded area just to the south of Gillette, the Empower Fieldhouse, and the south shopping area of Patriot Place, to the north of nearby Cross Street — the club's development Academy trains and holds its games at Gillette. The training pitch is at the bottom of a slight embankment, with winding roads leading to it.
According to the renderings, the Revolution will expand the facility to the south and southeast toward Cross Street. Access to the expanded complex will be via a newly-created road, Keith Road, which currently dead ends at the easternmost corner of the existing training pitch.
There is expected to be an emergency access point from Cross Street, but not used for public access.
"It's been a project that we've been working on for a while," Revs general manager Michael Burns told BostonSportsJournal.com recently. "We have good, adequate (facilities) now, but this elevates us."
The expanded complex would add three full-sized fields -- two grass, one turf -- as well as new parking lots along Keith Road. A building would also be constructed, which will consist of offices for all technical staff between the first team and the Academy, coaches offices, and locker rooms.
In addition, locker rooms for the first team and the Academy program would be in the building -- something the players do not have access to at the current training facility -- along with weight rooms, training rooms, a room for meals, and a conference room.
At present, the players and staff park at Gillette, change in the matchday locker room, and then ride in golf carts to and from training. The new facility would eliminate those extra steps.
"It would be a full training facility," Burns said.
The official design of the building has not yet been finalized.
Burns said the two new grass fields would serve the first team and be located just to the south of the new building; the current training field would become the Academy's grass field when the expansion is completed, with the turf field in the western edge of the property shared between them "if and when needed," he said. The Academy program would also utilize the field for their games on-site.
The fields will also have separation between them, but Burns stresses they will be "within walking distance" of each other.
"It won't be four fields in a square," he said. "We feel (the facility) will be a complete game changer for us."
A fifth field in the southwestern corner of the property is planned, and according to the renderings the dimensions note that it is expected to be smaller than a regulation field; Alden said Tuesday that it is currently unknown what usage that field would see.