Impact of Possible Sports Complex in Bettendorf - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Impact of Possible Sports Complex in Bettendorf

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At Tuesday's Bettendorf city council meeting, city leaders will decide whether to apply for $62M in state financing, to help construct the Spencer Creek Sports Complex. 

In addition, the developers plans call for a hotel, business park, and shopping center, built in the Spencer Creek area at the Northeast Corner of Middle Road and I-80.

If the vote passes Tuesday, Bettendorf will take advantage of a new Iowa economic development program. 

The program would redirect a portion of the state's share of hotel and sales taxes to reinvestment in new developments. 

The sports facility would include a pool, an multi-purpose area for tournaments, and seating for several hundred spectators. 

Also weighing on the minds of city leaders, are the unintended consequences of building a new facility, saying there are concerns about what waves it could cause with businesses in and around Bettendorf. 

"We've heard pretty clearly from people about their concerns over the competitive nature of this," says Bettendorf City Administrator Decker Ploehn."We certainly want to try to take into considerations those concerns and decide, in certain activities, if we even belong in the market place." 

Ploehn says the process of brining the multi-million dollar facility is still in the early stages. 

But, already, project developer, Todd Raufheisen, met with people and organizations who's bottom line could be hurt by a new facility. 

Like The River's Edge, and the I-Wireless Center. 

"It's the delicate dance we do all the time in the area," explains Ploehn. "Do what's good for the region first, then what's good for us, and do you blend those concerns with those activities."

But at the same time, he says Bettendorf needs to look at what facilities they have now, and decide what might make the most sense in the long run.

"The pool is better than 50 years old, the fitness center is close to that and the community center is more than 50 years old. We've got some decisions to make on those facilities."

Decisions on whether to update or fix those facilities, when the city could be seeing a new sports complex, which would include updated versions of all of those things.

Would people continue to go to the cities older facilities, if a new one was built?

Ploehn says it's just to early to answer that.


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