The Spokane Sports Commission continues to actively recruit, retain and facilitate sports events for the Inland Northwest. These efforts help our region realize the economic, social and community-development benefits of sports. To secure premium events in the future, we rely on quality facilities that support a winning environment for sports events and community activities. A new multi-purpose sports complex will allow our community to secure new events for our region as well as help alleviate ongoing demand for additional sports venues in our community. Learn more.
VISITORS PER YEAR
ADDITIONAL HOTEL STAYS PER YEAR
IN ADDITIONAL TOURISM
SPENDING PER YEAR
INCREASED GENERAL TAX REVENUES PER YEAR
Numbers based on an independent study performed by Gonzaga University and Sports Facility Advisory.
GROW THE ECONOMY
A new regional sports facility will boost the local and state economies through the attraction of visitors to our community. A recent Gonzaga University Study and Sports Facilities Advisory report estimated the new facility would generate an additional $33 million annually in direct tourism spending in our community. In addition, it would create new jobs through the construction phase and full-time employment once operational. Ultimately, the State and City will benefit from substantial new revenue streams that could not be realized without the existence of the facility.
As our community continues to grow as a sports destination, a new sports facility would allow the region to attract events that we have not been able to host due to facility restrictions. It will provide an exceptional experience for local athletes as well as for athletes and their fans coming from across the country and overseas.
GROW THE LOCAL SPORTS COMMUNITY
In order to compete on a world stage, our athletes need exceptional facilities. Currently, the region’s existing indoor facilities exceed scheduling parameters leaving little room for growth of local sports groups. Sports improve learning and teach accountability, dedication, and leadership, among many other traits. Sports contribute to growing a healthy, vibrant community.
The facility would be owned and operated by the Spokane Public Facilities District. Spokane Sports Commission would be responsible for the sales, marketing and scheduling of the facility.
The facility will be approximately 180,000 square feet. It will be designed with maximum flexibility in mind to accommodate a large variety of sports and events.
Final design and features will be decided after the completion of final viability study which includes feedback from primary user groups. Currenty, some of the features include:
Sports Facilities Advisory report estimates total project costs will be $42 million.
Spokane Public Facilities District independent evaluation estimates $41 million.
This facility will have two primary purposes. The first to host large tournaments that generate tourism. Second, be a practice and competition venue for local sports groups and community programming.
• 200-METER, 6-LANE INDOOR
HYDRAULIC BANKED TRACK
• FITS UP TO 17 VOLLEYBALL COURTS
• HOLDS UP TO 10 BASKETBALL COURTS
• FITS UP TO 21 WRESTLING MATS
• FLEXIBLE MULTI-SPORT SPACE
• NHL-SIZED ICE SHEET
DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION
BREAKING GROUND 2019
The Sportsplex will be located on public land of the Spokane River’s North Bank in downtown Spokane. This central location will create a natural continuation of Riverfront Park, making the park more accessible from both sides of the river. The location will be convenient for sports – travelers with easy access to restaurants, shopping and entertainment. This distinctive location will be one of the facility's best features for both visiting athletes and local sports groups.
After extensive research with national sports organizations, local sports groups, and professional sports advisors, the SportsPlex will be designed as a unique multipurpose indoor facility. As a multipurpose venue, the facility will transition between indoor track & field to court-based sports and a wide array of indoor sports including an ice complex. When not used for events, it will also serve the regional community as a sports and recreation facility for local programs. A progressive design/build process will start in the summer of 2018 with architectural concepts being unveiled near year-end. We anticipate ground breaking early 2019 with a likely opening in 2021.
North bank site map
Why does the Spokane region need this facility?
Current research shows there are over 200 national sports events that our community cannot currently host due to the lack of sports facilities. A handful of comparable cities across the United States are consistently awarded and benefiting from these events. A new multi-purpose sports complex would allow us to compete on a national stage and allow our community to host approximately forty more major events annually. Most importantly, this facility will provide needed space for our local sports programming—especially youth sports—as well as a wide range of non-sports community events and gatherings.
What are the details of the proposed sports facility?
A new multi-purpose indoor sports complex would be built as a state-of-the-art tournament and training facility designed to support numerous sports programs. The flexible space will have the ability to be quickly and efficiently converted for a variety of indoor sports including track & field, volleyball, basketball, wrestling, gymnastics, roller derby, boxing, fencing, and weightlifting. Additionally, an ice sheet to accommodate hockey, figure skating, and other ice sports is also part of the ongoing study.
How much would the venue cost and how will it be paid for?
The current construction cost is estimated at $42 million. A unique financing plan has been developed that brings together in partnership the the Public Facilities District (PFD), WA State, City of Spokane, Spokane County, and Hotel/Motel Association to fully fund the project. By utilizing an existing State sales tax rebate, lodging taxes, PFD reserves, , and a one-time contribution from the City of Spokane, the project will have the funds to construct and operate the facility without an increase in local taxes.
How will the venue fund its operation and maintenance?
Once constructed, operations and maintenance will be funded through revenue generated by events, rental fees, concessions, ticket sales, private sponsorships, and through a hotel/motel tax already paid by visitors to our community.
Will my local team be able to use this sports complex and how much will it cost?
The Sportsplex would be built to not only host large national events, but also support local league practices and tournaments. Many local teams and athletes are having difficulty finding indoor space to practice, train, and host their league tournaments. The scheduling and rental policies are designed to ensure our local teams and athletes are provided opportunities to access this state-of-the-art venue at a cost that is comparable to existing facilities. In fact, an agreement provides access for Parks Department programs rent free. Local community activities—even those that are not sports based—would be welcomed at the Sportsplex.
Who would own this facility?
The Sportsplex would be publicly owned and operated by the Spokane Public Facilities District. The District has significant experience from their successful management of the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena, INB Performing Arts Center, and Spokane Convention Center. The Spokane Sports Commission would be responsible for recruiting sports events and scheduling local programs for the facility.
Would Spokane Sports Commission benefit financially from this project?
No, Spokane Sports Commission will not have any direct financial gain related to the operation of a sports complex. The facility would be an important addition to our current mission of marketing and recruiting events for the region.
Does our community have the support needed to fill the facility?
Yes! Our roots in sports run deep thanks to the success of our high school and collegiate programs as well as a long history of hosting events such as NCAA basketball, Pacific Northwest Qualifier Volleyball Tournament, State High School Championships, US Figure Skating and many more. The depth of interest in sports in our region has been illustrated time and time again. We are home to Bloomsday, the largest timed road race in the U.S., and Hoopfest, the world’s largest 3-on-3-basketball tournament. Currently, our community has over 26,000 youth participating in some level of indoor sports - each in dire need of space to practice and compete. Partnerships with dozens of charitable, corporate, philanthropic and community partners continually show their support for sports in the region.
Can our community secure new events with a new sports complex?
Comparable facilities in similar sized communities around the country have been consistently awarded new sports events since investing in new facilities. Even our smaller neighbors such as Tri-Cities and Yakima are excelling after investing in the development of new facilities. Because of our well-known reputation within the National Governing Bodies of Sport, Spokane Sports Commission is confident they would respond in kind once we have a fitting venue.
What will a new sports complex contribute to our community’s growth?
Sports has served as a pillar of our region’s growth for many decades, and this new multipurpose venue would help fill a void in what many consider to be one of the best sports towns in the country. With our reputation as a sports community and our growing resume of national events, this new, world-class facility would showcase the region to even wider regional, national and international audiences. Sports help define Spokane as healthy, vibrant and family-orientated community—with a high quality of life, worthy of relocation and investment.
How will a regional sports complex boost our economy?
A multi-purpose sports complex will grow the local economies through the attraction of visitors to the region. A recent Gonzaga University study estimated the Sportsplex would attract over 25,000 visitors annually, generating an additional $33 million in direct tourism spending, which translates to $1.7 million in additional tax revenues for our community each year. Ultimately, our community will benefit from substantial new tax revenue streams paid by visitors that could not be realized without the existence of the facility. In addition, the facility will create hundreds of jobs through the construction phase and full-time employment once operational.
Why not use Spokane Arena or Spokane Convention Center?
We do have great facilities in Spokane but they do not fully meet the needs for a large, multi-use “participation based’ sports tournament venue. The Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena is designed for larger spectator events, and Spokane Convention Center is designed for many other uses beyond sports. While they each can serve a role in supporting sporting events, they are not large enough to serve the much greater number of events that are anticipated to come to our area in the future. In addition, as both conventions and sports events grow, scheduling conflicts are inevitable in the Arena and Convention Center—we don’t want to lose the opportunity to grow either in our community.
Why not use local college and university facilities?
Our local high schools, colleges, and universities continue to be exceptional partners in helping host many sports events and support local programs. Although, scheduling conflicts, size and location in these facilities limit the region’s ability to grow sports and attract additional and large sports events. In most cases, area high schools are unable to expand their schedules to allow for the growth of outside “club” sports programs like USA Volleyball and AAU Basketball.
Where is the building site and will there be enough parking?
The Spokane Public Facilities District and Spokane City Parks Department have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding to provide a site for the Sportsplex on undeveloped Parkland just north of Riverfront Park, near downtown Spokane. Nine hundred parking stalls owned by the Facilities District are directly adjacent to the site. In addition, the location will be able to utilize approximately 3,000 public parking stalls within a five block radius. One of the advantages to this site is the existing parking available to support the Sportsplex—this significantly reduces the overall construction cost.
What is the current status of the Sportsplex development?
The Spokane County Commissioners has been presented a financing plan by the City of Spokane, Spokane Public Facilities District, and Spokane Hotel/Motel Association to fund and guarantee the issue of Spokane County LTGO bonds.
The Spokane PFD has started a “progressive design build” process that will design the project “to budget”. This process requires State approval, which is scheduled for presentation in May 2018. Once approved, the Spokane PFD will select a design team to start the process of a detailed design for the project – anticipated through the summer and fall of 2018.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Check out comparable facilities across the nation.
SPORTS FACILITIES ADVISORY REPORT
In 2015, Spokane Public Facilities District hired Sports Facilities Advisory to conduct a comprehensive feasibility study of how the proposed new sports facility would impact the Spokane Region. The feasibility study includes an institutional-grade financial forecast, utilization projections, and economic impact analysis. This study also provides clear insight into construction and start-up costs, operational revenue and expense forecasts. Preliminary results have been released.
Learn more about Sports Facilities Advisory.
Pro Forma Report
View Spokane Feasibility Study
SPOKANE PUBLIC FACILITIES DISTRICT
SPOKANE SPORTS COMMISSION
The Spokane Sports Commission continues to recruit, retain and facilitate sports events for the Inland Northwest. These efforts help our region realize the economic, social and community-development benefits of sports. We are a nonprofit coalition of regional government; business and volunteers committed to recruiting and developing sports events. With these events come tourism dollars, entertainment and media attention attracting sports fans from around the world. Business wins. Kids win. Fans win, our region wins.
The Spokane Public Facilities District owns and operates the 12,500-seat Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena, the 2,700-seat INB Performing Arts Center and the Spokane Convention Center.
Having hosted a number of sporting events throughout the facilities, including multiple NCAA Men's & Women's basketball and volleyball championships, the 2007 & 2010 U.S. Figure Skating Championships, and variety of other wrestling and volleyball tournaments, the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena is also home to the Western Hockey League’s Spokane Chiefs Hockey Club and the Indoor Football League’s Spokane Shock. The Spokane Public Facilities District has a long history of creating event experiences that make their guests say “WOW”!
LEARN MORE ABOUT THE
SPOKANE SPORTS COMMISSION
Sports travel spending is the single largest segment of the sports industry nationwide, experiencing a 20% growth rate over the past three years. By expanding our sports facilities, the Spokane Region will realize significant economic benefit from this growing industry. Please show your support by spreading the word about this important project.
2018 | SITE MANAGED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH SPOKANE SPORTS COMMISSION AND SPOKANE PUBLIC FACILITIES DISTRICT