Demand drives push for new sports complex

Demand drives push for new sports complex

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by TONY BURBECK / NBC Charlotte

Bio | Email | Follow: @TonyWCNC

WCNC.com

Posted on June 5, 2014 at 5:27 PM

Updated Thursday, Jun 5 at 6:56 PM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Construction of an amateur sports complex next to Bojangles Coliseum and Ovens Auditorium in Charlotte could start by the end of the year, officials said Thursday.

 
Huge demand in the $7 billion itinerant youth sports market is driving it.
 
The project comes with a $65 million price tag and includes a big field house, a 150 room hotel and remodeling Bojangles Coliseum. 
 
"Anything from basketball to volleyball, to badminton to wrestling, dance, cheer, you name it,” said GoodSports Vice President Anthony Homer. 
 
That's Homer’s vision for the area. GoodSports is ready to spend about $40 million to make it happen. They operate four other sports complexes in other states.
 
"There's a huge, pent up demand and it's incredibly underserved,” Homer said.
 
Weekdays would be regular gym stuff for locals. Weekends would be money makers - like tournaments - with people driving from 100 miles away. 
 
But it's not just GoodSports putting up the cash.
 
The City of Charlotte, which owns Bojangles and Ovens Auditorium, would put in $25 million. Much of that would go toward building the field house and parking.
 
The area already has a big parking lot but about 500 additional spots would be added.  
 
Officials say $12 million in hospitality taxes would renovate Bojangles, including roof repairs, new seating, scoreboard and electrical systems. 
 
The goal is hosting some CIAA tournament games and housing CIAA headquarters. Tournament offices are moving to Charlotte in 2016. 
 
"One of the potential sites is the office space,” said CRVA CEO Tom Murray at an economic development meeting about the project Thursday.
 
All this still needs council approval. That could happen this fall. If approved, construction a stone's throw from Kaitlin Capelluti's house could start before the end of the year and finish in 2016.
 
"I don't think I'm going to benefit from it at all. If anything it's just going to be more traffic in my neighborhood and the quiet neighborhood I moved into isn't going to be a quiet neighborhood anymore,” she said. 
 

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