The city of Spanish Fort is in the early stages of developing a sports complex on 26.2 acres of land on Jimmy Faulkner Drive.
The City Council approved a $5 million loan earmarked for the construction and development of the complex, which will be repaid over five years at a 1.047 percent interest rate. Mayor Mike McMillan said the city included $1 million for loan repayment in its 2016 fiscal year budget.
The first phase of development will include two fields that can be used for football and soccer as well as park infrastructure like water, sewer, parking lots, bleachers, concessions and restrooms. A second phase could see the development of additional baseball and softball fields.
Currently, the city does not have its own soccer league.
While Spanish Fort children can play in the Daphne soccer league or elsewhere, McMillan said he would like for the city to have the option for its own league in the future. McMillan said the city’s football league has 10 teams that share fields, so they need more places to play and practice.
“We recognize we have a need to expand our recreation facilities,” McMillan said. “Right now some of our greatest recreation growth is in football, so the first phase will be to develop two football and soccer fields.”
The sports park will be developed on land given to the city when it annexed the 11,000-acre Highlands parcel into the city.
“When Highlands came into the city they dedicated parts of the land for us to use for government projects like parks, schools and public safety,” McMillan said.
According to McMillan, the city could use another portion of the loan to renovate the city’s fire station across the street from the Spanish Fort Community Center.
“We will be able to do a combination of things with the money,” he said.
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