Sports Complex Task Force
The Spring Hill Sports Complex Task Force was created in May 2019 by Mayor Rick Graham. The task force was assigned to perform the groundwork needed to eventually consider building a Spring Hill Sports Complex to meet our community's needs for baseball and softball facilities, and potentially other sports facilities. Currently, Spring Hill does not have enough active ball fields to serve our population size, and many children are not able to play organized baseball/softball due to the high numbers, or have to play or participate outside of Spring Hill. The Sports Complex Task Force will serve as an advisory committee to the Board of Mayor and Aldermen (BOMA) to make non-binding recommendations about these facilities for the board's consideration.
Along with a desire to strengthen Spring Hill's quality of life and address our city’s sports field deficiency, the obvious positive economic impacts that come along with first class sports complexes is another significant consideration in the exploration of such a project. These types of facilities attract regional and national tournaments, resulting in significant new spending to boost the local economy and bring in additional tax revenue to help fund these types of public developments.
A 2017 study by the National Association of Sports Commissioners noted:
• There was a $15.3 billion sports tourism industry in in the U.S. in 2017 (55% growth since 2010).
• Youth sports tourism is the fastest growing segment in travel – 45+ million.
• Communities are supporting health and wellness (which complements the Spring Hill Mayor’s Healthy Challenge).
• Visitors spend an average of $250 a day at each event.
• The average family will spend $670 per year on sports related activities.
• Fast-growing sports include lacrosse (47%), roller hockey (38%), and ice hockey (19%)
• Sports vacations for families or “Tourna-cations” are a fast-growing segment of sports tourism.
• About 70% of children ages 6-17 are playing team sports.
One of the first key steps in the City’s exploratory process will be to conduct a market feasibility study, along with evaluating the numerous case studies available to glean best practices on how to best approach planning, design, land acquisition, fundraising, partnerships, construction, and operations. The initial significant investment would be purchasing a suitable land parcel with level topography, preferably outside of a floodplain. Key goals of such an initiative will include developing first-class facilities, leveraging existing tourism infrastructure (hotels, restaurants, shopping, etc.), and creating homegrown events (tournaments, invitationals, etc.).
This new task force will be key in helping to establish the fact-finding research and context needed for the board to eventually consider a sports complex in Spring Hill’s future.
- Jeff Graves, Alderman
- Paul Downing, Planning Commissioner
- Jonathan Duda, former Alderman
- Clint McCain, former Alderman
- Tim Brister
- Jon Stephenson
- Rod Holliman