The Hoover City Council on Monday night is scheduled to vote on whether to hire a Florida-based company to oversee development, marketing and management for the new 124-acre sports complex being built next to Hoover Metropolitan Stadium, as well as the Hoover Met itself.
The council heard a presentation from Sports Facilities Management of Clearwater, Florida, on June 30 and had additional conversations with company representatives at the council’s work session this past Thursday.
Sports Facilities Management would be charged with developing an operating budget and financial forecast, selecting vendors and sport-specific materials such as court flooring and equipment, coordinating with the design and construction contractors, and creating organizational, operational, programming and business development plans.
The original proposal called for the city to pay the company $340,000 between now and the anticipated May 2017 opening of the 155,000-square-foot indoor event center, Councilman Joe Rives said.
After the facility opens, the original proposal called for the city to pay Sports Facilities Management $28,000 a month for full-time management services, plus the cost of any on-site employees the company hires on behalf of the city, Rives said.
However, city officials have in negotiations with Sports Facilities Management and have been making changes to the proposed contract. Those changes were not available last week.
Jason Clement, a founding partner of Sports Facilities Management who serves as the company’s chief operating officer, said that if his company is hired, it will try to put together a financial forecast within four to six weeks for city officials to review.
Councilman John Lyda wanted to know how this company’s work dealing with construction would be different from what Brasfield & Gorrie is providing as construction manager.
Hoover Executive Director Allen Pate said Brasfield & Gorrie is looking over the day-to-day operations of the construction contractors. Clement said Sports Facilities Management would provide operational expertise, letting the construction team know the operational implications of construction decisions.
Councilman Gene Smith wanted to know if Sports Facilities Management would be assuming day-to-day management of the Hoover Met, and Clement said yes. However, the Hoover Met has a reputation as a well-run facility, and at least in the beginning, things will continue business as usual as the new management learns how the Met currently operates, Clement said.
Councilman Joe Rives said he’s very interested in seeing what Sports Facilities Management can do to make greater use of the Hoover Met.
Smith asked if other companies were considered for the job. Hoover Finance Director Robert Yeager said he did some research and could not find other companies that do what Sports Facilities Management does. He found some companies that manage recreation centers, performing arts centers and office buildings for cities, but none that manage sports complexes, he said.
The Hoover City Council also on Monday is scheduled to vote on awarding a “general works” construction package for the new sports complex. The budget for that work was $18,350,000, Pate said. Two companies submitted bids, and city officials still were checking some details of those bids last week.
The council also plans to vote on awarding contracts for the Hoover RV Park expansion, a re-roofing project at the Hoover Public Safety Center and the repainting of a 1985 aerial ladder fire truck.
In other business, the council will consider:
- An agreement with the Alabama Department of Transportation for the updating of the city’s bicycle and pedestrian plan. The plan was last updated in 1999. Updating will cost $250,000, with the federal government picking up $200,000 of that cost, Hoover Assistant Executive Director Tim Westhoven said.
- An ordinance to allow and regulate mobile food trucks.
- A request to allow construction of a new event center for social/corporate events and live entertainment at 2505 International Park Lane. The name is Noah’s Event Venue.
- A request to allow the sale of liquor at Bumpers Billiards at 2132 Lorna Ridge Lane.
- A request to allow the sale of liquor at a new restaurant called Swamp Monster BBQ at 1843 Montgomery Highway.
- A request for the city to annex two single-family homes at 3425 Laurel View Lane and 3546 William and Mary Road.
- A request to rezone recently annexed property at 1833 Burning Tree Circle from Jefferson County R-1 residential zoning to Hoover R-1 single-family residential zoning.
The meeting is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. in the William J. Billingsley Council Chambers at the Hoover Municipal Center.