During the current recession The Greater Dover Committee (GDC) has taken economic development into their own hands, by creating the framework for the recently announced Kent County Regional Sports Complex just north of Milford in Frederica. After three years of tireless meetings, debates and presentations by GDC, the Delaware Infrastructure Investment Committee approved more than $3.2 million for the project that has a predicted $18 million annual economic impact.
“This will provide the state with the infrastructure needed to compete for more sports tourism – already a $2.1 billion industry in Delaware,” said Alan Levin, Director of the Delaware Economic Development Office. “We’re excited about what this means for the future of Kent County and the state as a whole – this will be a big plus for economic development.”
The new sports complex will include an indoor facility and 15 fields, which will host mainly soccer, lacrosse and field hockey events and could draw up to 10 major annual sports tournaments. According to demographic research done by the Greater Dover Committee, the size of the future sports complex will allow it to compete not only for sports tournaments in the local and regional market but the entire Mid-Atlantic market, which includes a 120 minute radius and 9.93 million individuals.
The complex, which is said to break ground in 2013, is predicted to have a huge economic impact on the Greater Milford Area and will act as an engine for growth in Central Delaware.
“Milford will benefit greatly from this facility,” commented Bill Strickland, President of the Greater Dover Committee. “It will create an opportunity for Milford to expose themselves to others that they have not had a chance to in the past.”
Strickland states that the sheer size of the complex will allow it to be competitive with other complexes in the region by offering a facility that can host tournament games all in one location at the same time.
Several key players have partnered to make this complex, which has a projected economic impact of more than $18 million annually and the creation of 302 jobs in Kent County, a reality in the near future. Kent County Levy Court has donated 100 acers of land which is located across Route 1 from Meding’s Seafood while the Delaware Infrastructure fund has committed $3.2 to the project. Other entities including the Delaware Economic Development Office, The Greater Dover Committee and several Kent County legislators were critical in moving the Kent County Regional Sports Complex forward.
“We are ecstatic that the committee saw the merit in the economic development potential of the Kent County Regional Complex Association,” Strickland said. “I can’t overstate how appreciative we are of the broad-based support that we’ve received from both our public and private leadership to continue to advance this project.”