WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - The Wilmington City Council unanimously approved to accept the donation of a 65-acre property from Cape Fear Soccerplex and to enter a management agreement with Cape Fear Soccer Association to operate the complex Tuesday night.
The property, which is located on Sutton Steam Plant Road off of Hwy. 421, currently consists of seven soccer fields, a driveway, a gravel parking lot, a gazebo and a temporary restroom building. The city plans to use the approximately 32 acres of undeveloped land on the property to add additional fields to the complex.
“It’s a plus plus," said council member Neil Anderson. "I think the thing that I’ve gotten the most calls on, frankly, is not where it is, or any of that. I think everybody is excited about it, the opportunity to host tournaments and create some real economic impact on the city with soccer, lacrosse, rugby, all the various sports that people play on that type of field.”
The city has agreed to pay the Cape Fear Soccer Association $225,000 annually to handle day-to-day operations of the complex. The agreement is for 17 years with three additional renewal periods of five years each.
The city will be responsible for janitorial maintenance and facility improvements on the property.
According to city officials, a Sports Complex User Group Advisory Committee will be appointed by the City Council to “make policy and capital improvement recommendations, help promote the facility and identify ways to ensure the facility has the opportunity to be used equitably among Wilmington’s diverse population.”
As part of the agreement, the Hammerheads Club will have scheduling priority for up to seven fields January to June and August to November.