Design sketch by Goodwyn Mills & Cawood
Hoover Sportsplex design June 2016
The 124-acre Hoover Sportsplex is slated to include a 155,000-square-foot indoor event center, 5 college-size baseball fields, five soccer/lacrosse/football fields and 16 tennis courts.
The cost of the planned Hoover Sportsplex next to Hoover Metropolitan Stadium has risen from an estimated $70 million to an estimated $76 million, Hoover Executive Director Allen Pate said tonight.
City leaders today revealed a proposal to borrow $80 million to pay for the Sportsplex and other “miscellaneous improvements” in the city. The City Council plans to have a first reading of the ordinance to borrow the money on Monday and then vote on the matter on June 20.
The Sportsplex is slated to include an indoor event center, five college-size baseball fields, five soccer/lacrosse/football fields and 16 tennis courts.
Pate said about $76 million of the bond issue would be budgeted to go toward the Sportsplex, but he hopes the cost will actually come in less as various construction packages are bid out.
He noted numerous reasons for the cost increase, including increasing the square footage of the indoor event center from about 141,000 to about 155,000 square feet. This will allow more room for circulation, bigger restrooms and more room outside the boundary lines of indoor fields or courts, he said.
Revised plans also include a tennis pro shop and shade structures over the seating area at the tennis courts, Pate said.
Additionally, the cost of relocating a gas pipeline came in higher than anticipated, and the previous $20.8 million budgeted for the indoor event center did not include furniture, fixtures and equipment, Pate said.
Both the previous $70 million estimate and current $76 million estimate include $3.3 million for unexpected contingency expenses.
“When all is said and done, we’re going to hopefully be very close to where we started,” Pate said.
Hoover officials are expecting an announcement Friday about whether the SEC Baseball Tournament will remain in Hoover or be moved to another city.
Pate said tonight that he feels good about Hoover’s chances of keeping the tournament, but Hoover officials are waiting for the decision from the SEC, which is holding spring meetings in Destin this week.
If Hoover does win a contract to keep the SEC Baseball Tournament, Pate said he believes the Hoover Sportsplex indoor event center will have played a significant part in that. The SEC will be able to use the indoor event center for a number of purposes related to the tournament, he said.
Construction work for the indoor event center already has begun. Workers have started removing some of the asphalt at the Hoover RV Park to make way for the indoor center, Councilman Joe Rives said.
The indoor facility is expected to take up about 32 of the current RV parking spaces at the Met, but more RV spaces are slated to be added elsewhere, potentially expanding the total number of RV spaces from 145 to 176, city officials have said.
The goal is to have the indoor event center operational by the next SEC Baseball Tournament in May 2017 and to have the sports fields and tennis complex completed by February 2018, Pate has said.