Kent Co. Regional Sports Complex Finally Moving Forward - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Kent Co. Regional Sports Complex Finally Moving Forward

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DOVER, Del.- The Kent County Regional Sports Complex is finally back on the road to completion.

The $24-million project - considered by many to be an economic engine - is supposed to put more than a dozen soccer, field hockey, lacrosse fields in one place just off state route one in south Frederica.

But the project had been stalled since September 2013.

Project leaders from the Greater Kent Committee wanted an overpass across DE 1 for drivers to use to safely access the complex. DelDOT does plan to build that overpass, but it's way down on the priority list. And officials wouldn't move its timeline up to accommodate the complex saying there were other traffic flow options.

With no agreement, the frederica space sat empty - unclear if it would ever get sports fields. That is, until recently.

"For the last several months, we have worked on new right in and right out, as an alternative to the previously planned South Frederica overpass," said Bill Strickland, with the Greater Kent Committee.

Strickland says the overpass going in just a bit south at Thompsonville Road allows for this to become an option. DelDOT broke ground on that overpass in late January. Drew Boyce, DelDOT Director of Planning, says the complex will pay for the additions it needs to DE 1 not DelDOT.

"Essentially it's a right in, right out entrance. And so, they will have to construct a deceleration lane for folks who are traveling northbound. On the north side, they will have to construct an acceleration lane."

Strickland says his team went to its consultant six months ago to see if the window to act had been missed in the almost two-year stall.

"The response we got back was, 'You need to break ground this year. And you need to be able to be hosting a tournament or two towards the latter part of 2016 to remain viable. And if you miss that, if you're not able to do that, you've likely missed your window."

The current timeline has construction starting in October 2015 with tournaments starting in October 2016.

Strickland presented financial proposal to Kent County Levy Court this week. He hopes to have a thumbs up within a month to stay on the construction timeline.

The complex was originally slated to open in 2014. The stall pushed that date back.

Over the summer, Frederica-area community members came together to try to give the project a kick forward in Kent County.

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