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Soccer complex building construction to begin in July, wrap by fall 2022

Oct 31, 2023

This rendering shows an overhead view of Enid's Advance Soccer Complex being built at Rupe and Garland.

ENID, Okla. — Construction on Enid's new soccer complex is now expected to wrap by September 2022, those involved with the project said Tuesday.

With most fields now complete in the Advance Soccer Complex, project organizers said they hope to begin the final phases of construction on the complex's buildings by July.

Mark Allen, adviser for Enid Sports Association, told city commissioners Tuesday night that site drawings will be complete by May and bids will go out in June. A construction manager then will be selected by the end of that month, with shovels going in the ground by July 1.

Along with the seven large fields, the soccer complex also will include a fenced playground, water features, a shade station, a press box on the turf field and a single-story clubhouse, as well as three small practice fields and an indoor multi-purpose field.

The 24,000-square-foot clubhouse facility will be load-bearing if the city of Enid would like to add a second floor, Allen said. The building will include four locker rooms, a concessions area, referees’ and coaches’ lounges, and a coaches’ workroom that would share a retractable wall with a conference room.

Allen asked if city officials would consider making the north side of the complex a one-way road to lessen congestion for pickup and drop-off bus sites.

A sign welcomes players and visitors to the new Advance Soccer Complex on South Garland Feb. 27, 2023.

Through a public-private partnership, the city of Enid will own the assets and facility and be responsible for utilities, while ESA will operate and maintain the facility such as treating the grass on six of the complex's seven fields.

These fields have all been graded and sodded, he said, while the seventh will be an all-weather turf that will be completed over the next year.

Field maintenance is required daily, Allen said, much like a golf course, with treatments and special mowers and other equipment.

A maintenance director, David Moeller, will begin full-time work in May.

The city also has installed stormwater and water retention areas, utilities, sewer work and road work.

Ward 1 Commissioner Jerry Allen (of no relation to the Allen family and its foundation) said he was excited to watch development since the grass started growing while driving by the field every day to work.

"Thank you to your family for changing the entire complexion of this community over the years," he told Mark Allen. "This added to the ballpark is unbelievable, well, for our town."

The Allens previously led construction of David Allen Memorial Ballpark, which the city owns in a similar partnership with Enid Public Schools. The ballpark hosts the NJCAA Division II World Series and baseball games for Enid High School and Northern Oklahoma College.

The ballpark also brings the city about $6 million in local economic impact a year, fundraising coordinator Nicole Winfield has previously said.

"We’ve seen what David Allen Memorial Ballpark can do for the pride of Enid … and we thought that a soccer complex would give yet another point of civic pride for the city of Enid," Mark Allen said.

All seven fields will be able to hold a total 2,400 people in a single day, project manager Renny Turner said.

Though OG&E has not committed any funds, Allen said he didn't know if ESA had asked yet either. OG&E had been on site, though.

Turner said energy credit between $100,000-$200,000 will be available from OG&E, project manager Renny Turner said.

Allen said Tuesday was a nice "pivot point" because engineering and concepts were both reported as complete at ESA's board meeting earlier that day.

He and Tim McLaughlin serve as board advisers for the nonprofit's board, which formed in 2017 to focus on development of the complex. Board members and project managers then consulted with soccer players and coaches from Enid Soccer Club, EPS, Northern Oklahoma College and Denny Price Family YMCA.

Both families’ foundations donated $1.5 million each when the project first began, and the city of Enid provided $3 million more. The Allen Family Foundation first bought the entire tract of land over three years ago.

Mark Allen said the family would continue to keep the land to the west of the complex, where there's twice as much room, for possible future developments for the complex or an elementary school, Allen said.

"We’re not gonna sell that land, because we want this project in the next 20 years to work in the best way of the community," he said.

Overall cost for the project will fall between $9.5 million to $10.5 million, he said.

He said ESA so far has $8 million committed but wasn't worried since fundraising hasn't been done with the community at-large. Fundraising had been pushed back because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We’ll know a lot more in another 60 days," Allen said.

Lights for the fields would be the most expensive proposition going forward, coming to $1 million, he said, including putting in transformers and wiring underneath to light the entire complex. The board hasn't drawn in lights to light parking lots yet.

Only lights for the championship field are available with current funding, Allen said, and ESA would rather not phase projects.

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Ewald is copy editor and city/education reporter for the Enid News & Eagle.

Writer, doer and overthinker. OU grad, California native with Oklahoma heritage.

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