Final Design for Kent County Sports Complex Released - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Final Design for Kent County Sports Complex Released

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Artist's rendering of the Kent County Regional Sports Complex, which will have 12 multi-use fields - for soccer, field hockey or lacrosse - with synthetic turf and lighting. One of the fields will also have a 1,500-person grandstand. Artist's rendering of the Kent County Regional Sports Complex, which will have 12 multi-use fields - for soccer, field hockey or lacrosse - with synthetic turf and lighting. One of the fields will also have a 1,500-person grandstand.

DOVER, Del. (WBOC)- Work on the new Kent County Regional Sports Complex continues as the Greater Kent Committee met at the Duncan Center in Dover on Wednesday afternoon to unveil the final design.

The complex will be located adjacent to DE 1 near Frederica. The design has 12 multi-use fields - for soccer, field hockey or lacrosse - with synthetic turf and lighting. One of the fields will also have a 1,500-person grandstand.

Originally the design had 15 fields. It also included an indoor facility. That was eliminated after it was found not to create enough economic impact.

The changes leave the project costing more than first planned. The original design's projected cost was $17 million. The final setup will run $24 million.

Greater Kent Committee President Bill Strickland said the synthetic turf and lighting are the reason for the jump.

"It will give us a competitive uniqueness in the marketplace," he said. "This project - with those synthetic fields and the lighting - will be unique in the Mid-Atlantic. There's not another one like it."

"We made that change because the change allows continual use of the facility," said Gregg Moore, with Becker Morgan. "It allows for better tournaments, because the fields don't get torn up. It attracts bigger tournaments."

Strickland added that it cuts down on short and long-term maintenance costs.

The complex project has already gotten $3.2 million from the Delaware New Jobs Infrastructure Fund and has about $1 million set aside for it in the 2014 state budget.

As the sports complex project moves forward, another connected project is having issues. This one involves DE 1 at the complex site. The Delaware Department of Transportation plans to build an overpass connecting Milford Neck and Tub Mill Pond Roads over DE 1.

"It's very important to the sports complex," Moore said. "Number one because of safe access. Number two because our designs are based on that interchange being there."

But DelDOT has proposed pushing the overpass project back two years. Delay could be serious issue for the complex.

"We need to work with DelDOT to get this project back on its priority planning," said Strickland.

Strickland said they will meet with DelDOT on that later this month to try to find a different path forward.

In the meantime work on the complex pushes ahead. The goal is to have construction finished in fall 2015 and be ready for play in fall 2016.

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