The town of Grand Chute, Wisconsin is set to make a big splash in the sports tourism industry as it is poised to build a new sports complex that could cost more than $30 million.
The indoor sports facility, named the Fox Cities Champion Center, will be built on 25 acres of land north of Greenville Drive and east of McCarthy Road in Grand Chute. The complex will measure 164,000 square feet and include three pods and a lobby.
Plans call for a permanent hard court for sports like basketball and volleyball as well as a permanent ice rink and a second rink that could be converted into a hard court.
Construction is scheduled to begin in July. The opening of the center is planned for October 2019.
The Champion Center is expected to draw tournaments to the area, built with the money from a hotel room tax. The complex is projected to generate $8.9 million in direct spending during its first year of operation and $12 million annually by its fifth year.
When the project was announced in December, it was expected to cost $25 million. As the plans have further developed, the cost estimate has risen to $30.6 million ($29.2 million for construction and $1.4 million for furniture, fixtures and equipment).
The complex was originally slated to be built and owned by Fox Cities Sports Development, a nonprofit subsidiary of the convention and visitors bureau, on land donated by Grand Chute.
The latest plan calls for Grand Chute to retain the land and build and own the complex. The town would sign an agreement with Fox Cities Sports Development to operate the facility. It would then contract out those duties.
Grand Chute is a town located in Outagamie County, Wisconsin. With a population of 20,919, Grand Chute was the largest town by population in the state of Wisconsin as of the 2010 census.