A sports activities complicated may lastly be coming to Jacksonville with the acquisition of roughly 400 acres of land within the Williamsburg growth.
Town of Jacksonville introduced at their latest metropolis council assembly that they closed a $2.4 million deal on the property for leisure functions with out affecting the present tax charge. The property will start on the finish of the highway the place Western Boulevard extends previous Gum Department Highway.
Town’s fundamental precedence for the land is to construct some form of sports activities complicated as a result of present wants of Jacksonville, in accordance with Jacksonville Mayor Sammy Phillips.
“One of many issues I hold listening to time and again…It’s a recurring factor that I hear from folks locally is we don’t have sufficient fields,” Phillips stated. “I additionally hear that, you recognize, we are able to’t get any tournaments right here as a result of all these different communities are grabbing up all of the tournaments, and we don’t have the assets right here to do this.”
The one sports activities complexes/recreation facilities at present in Jacksonville embody the Jacksonville Commons Recreation Middle, Jack Amyette Recreation Middle, and some different small ones reminiscent of Northwoods Recreation Middle and Kerr Recreation Middle.
Nonetheless, Jack Amyette’s gymnasium needed to be torn down and rebuilt as a consequence of injury from Hurricane Florence. In accordance with a press launch, town additionally needed to enhance the scale of the construction to accommodate for rising group want, which highlights the necessity for a sports activities complicated in Jacksonville much more.
“The first function of constructing that is for our present residents and hopefully, for our future residents,” stated Jacksonville Metropolis Supervisor Richard Woodruff, “as a result of we do know that high quality of life determines the place folks wish to transfer.”
Phillips laid out concepts for the kind of complicated they want to see. He stated the complicated would want to have rectangular fields for soccer, lacrosse, flag soccer, and others. He additionally stated that baseball and softball fields have been necessary for each youth and adults, particularly due to the rising inhabitants within the space of the land.
Phillips additionally stated they hope to have trails, biking, and health problem programs.
“Are you able to think about?” stated Phillips. “Now we’re going to have the ability to serve all of our wants recreation clever so far as fields are involved, but in addition we’re going to be ready the place we are able to host tournaments, which is nice for financial growth.”
The sports activities complicated would in all probability fill about 100 acres of the land, in accordance with Phillips and Woodruff, leaving 300 acres for different use. Nonetheless, 190 acres of that land is wetlands.
Phillips stated different ideas they’ve thought-about for the remaining land embody a water park and splash pad, in addition to a bicycle course.
The method for constructing on the land shall be lengthy, with funding and growth anticipated to be someday throughout the fiscal years of 2024-2026, and in accordance with a press launch, subsequent steps embody creating ideas to share at public enter classes and with advisory committees for suggestions.
“From an financial standpoint, that’s actually secondary,” stated Woodruff. “An important factor is constructing the standard of life for our present residents.”
Reporter Morgan Starling will be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.