City officials gave an update to a proposed youth sports complex for not only baseball and softball fields, but a walking trail, basketball courts and other amenities for all ages.
City Manager Leroy Alsup gave the update at Tuesday night’s city council meeting.
The video is below the article.
In May 2017, the City of Guthrie formed a Sports Complex Task Force to research the primary sports to be incorporated into a complex, identification and evaluation of proposed sites, cost estimate, operation and maintenance plan and format to pay for the proposed complex.
A new rendering of the concept plan was revealed with a new location known as the “80 Acres” which the City owns. The location is off Highway 33 at College Ave. and Midwest Blvd.
“Our thoughts are we would use 70 of the 80 acres and reserve 10 acres. The thought is some time in the future that Logan County (Board of County Commissioners) may want to move the fairgrounds and have an Expo Center,” Alsup said.
The complex would showcase six softball fields and eight baseball fields in three separate pods.
The latest concept plan does not include soccer fields. However, working with the soccer club, improvements to the current facility (on Academy Road) would continue. This past summer, the City added an irrigation system to help with playing conditions.
The future operation and management of the youth complex is expected to be modeled after the Edmond All Sports, Inc. with a lease agreement between the City and the future sports authority.
“The sports authority would be responsible for all the operations and routine maintenance. The City would only step in on major improvements in the future,” Alsup said.
The cost estimate of the project, which includes extension of utilities is roughly $14.2 million.
“This is something that is not going to happen overnight,” Alsup added about the project.
The task force will look to divide the project into phases to help offset the cost. Initial discussions for phase one would be to add the softball complex and graveled parking.
Possible ways to fund the project is with grants, lodging tax and with the Capital Improvement Project (CIP) sales tax.
“We are a long way from it (funding),” Alsup said.
The current lodging tax for the City is at four percent. With a vote of the people, an 8 percent lodging tax would generate just under $225,000 of additional revenue annually based on the current revenue stream.
“If we were successful in increasing the motel tax, then we could look at applying for a land, water conservation grant application. It’s a 50-50 match,” Alsup said.
Mayor Steve Gentling says the project is exciting.
“With the youth sports complex potential, it really is an exciting time and it’s a great vision.”