CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Easing potential sticker shock is the intent of city council members who may back a new indoor amateur sports complex. Former assistant city manager Ron Kimble is the project consultant.
"This will be funded by hospitality and tourism taxes," Kimble said. "We know that there is interest out there by private sector partners.
It's not just in one location, but it could be in several locations of our city."
A similar proposal earmarked for Bojangles' Coliseum came three years ago, but private backers lost their funding. Still, Mike Crum of the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority (CRVA) feels the community could make such a venue work.
"The important take away here is that the Charlotte market is the number one visitor economy in both Carolinas," Crum said.
While Bojangles' Coliseum was the only site on the list during previous conversations, other locales like the old Eastland Mall site could be in play.
The complex would house ten basketball courts that could be converted to 20 volleyball courts, along with space for floor and mat sports. Councilman Ed Driggs is comfortable with the freedom of location.
"We're not limiting ourselves on the deal is a big plus," Driggs said.
Competition is all around the area. Rock Hill recently announced plans for a new indoor athletic center, and Matthews has shown success with an outdoor soccer venue as well.
James Mitchell, who chairs the Economic Development Committee, wants the deal done before a new council takes over later this year.
"We make a recommendation to council by November 27. My goal for this council is to move forward and vote on it," Mitchell said.
Bids open on Monday, September 18, and close on October 31.