The president of Indiana Tech in Fort Wayne believes a new $6.4 million athletics complex at city-owned Memorial Park will not only give the school’s track and field and softball teams home fields to call their own, but could also attract local and national sporting events. Arthur Snyder said the "true partnership" between the city and the college could include neighborhood programming, coordinated public access to the facilities and may open the door to hosting national championship games or meets.
During an unveiling ceremony Tuesday, Snyder called the arrangement a "win-win." Under the agreement, Indiana Tech will own and manage the new facilities and planned training and office space, while the Parks & Recreation Department will continue to oversee spaces and facilities it currently runs. The city and school say existing amenities at Memorial Park will not be affected and final details are still being worked out.
Plans call for:
- A new 350-seat softball stadium, which will upgrade existing facilities with features including a digital scoreboard, turf outfield and batting cages.
- A new 500-seat track and field complex with 400-meter, eight-lane track and natural grass infield with dedicated space for discus, shot put and hammer throw events.
- A 10,000 square-foot, multi-purpose athletics building with sports medicine, treatment and training facilities, men’s and women’s home and away locker rooms, coaches offices and meeting rooms.
Snyder said "this new partnership represents a win for all involved – Indiana Tech, our neighborhood, and the City as a whole. We’re pleased to give our national champion track teams and our softball team great new facilities, while continuing to engage our neighbors, area athletes, and the entire community through collaborative programming with the Parks & Recreation Department."
The proposal has been submitted to the Planning Commission and Board of Zoning Appeals. It will also need approval from the Board of Park Commissioners. Construction could begin in June 2017 and be complete next March.
View video of Tuesday’s news conference with President Arthur Snyder and Mayor Tom Henry: