If You Build It They Will Come

The City of Edmonton is building its own field of dreams and answering the call of Edmonton’s field-sports community for a world-class tournament facility.

It’s an exciting time to be an avid rugby or soccer player in Edmonton. This new facility, called the Multi-sport Tournament and Recreation site, will be equipped to host major tournaments for field sports like rugby and soccer and will offer weekly league players plus high level and recreational athletes a well kept area to get active.

Recently I took a trip out to see this site, located at the corner of Ellerslie Road and 50th Street, just off Anthony Henday Drive. The site was at one time, the home of the Strathcona Shooting Range. It has since been remediated.

When you drive up to the site you instantly get a feel for its size. It will be 138 acres of sports fields, roadways, parking lots, change houses, lights, stands, irrigation and club houses.

At the moment there is a lot of construction underway on the site.

The City is currently working on preparing the site which includes construction of three initial parking lots, internal roadway construction, several storm water ponds, and common area landscaping. The storm ponds will be used to water the fields. Altogether, the City’s contribution will be approximately $25 million, the majority of which has already been funded.

Partner sporting groups are responsible for the capital development of their specific fields as well as any support amenities required such as clubhouse, field lights, irrigation, bleachers, sports field fixtures like goal posts, backstops, dugouts, etc, and landscaping within their field and clubhouse areas.

You can already see some of the rugby fields have been sodded and the irrigation is in. The rough grade of 14 soccer fields is complete and will enter into varying degrees of development in 2011.

It’s unclear what the final site will look like when it’s finished. Currently the City of Edmonton is looking for an additional sporting organization to come forward with a development proposal for a 21.25 acre portion of the land.

This new sporting organization would join the City of Edmonton in its partnership with the other sports organizations that make up the Multi-sport Tournament and Recreation Site Board to develop and operate the site.

For more information on the Multi-sport Tournament and Recreation site or to submit a development proposal go to www.edmonton.ca/MTRS.