This new sports complex will support 13 new multi-use sports fields, with two to four weeks out of the year scheduled to be used for parking for special events. One complex will be near WestWorld, to add additional parking for major events such as the Waste Management Phoenix Open, or Barrett-Jackson.
The first phase of this newly approved plan is the Bell Road Complex, on 37 vacant acres at the northwest corner of Bell Rd and 94th St. Parking will consist of about 600 permanent parking spaces. In the situation of a special event, the fields are used as parking and will add an additional 3,500 parking spots. This park will not include any sports fields, but will offer trails and a lake to irrigate the fields.
DC Ranch is the neighboring community to this park. Residents have questions and concerns regarding traffic, lighting, parking from these events, as well as the overall increase in activity. Residents voiced these concerns at a recent open house, and several of these concerns have already been addressed:
- For the special events that happen two to four weeks out of the year, the facility will use more current LED lights to focus the light on the fields, and not into the neighborhood.
- Residents are requesting to close the park at 10:00 pm, instead of the current proposal of 10:30pm. The city was also asked to lower the speed limit on 94th St to 35mph, and add a crosswalk while improving pedestrian safety and access. Council did not vote for these changes, but have asked staff to look into getting those changed.
The city plans to begin work on the site in January, with the goal of completing this project in two years. While that is moving forward the city is looking to bid on state trust land at McDowell Mountain Ranch Road and Thompson Peak Pkwy. This second phase is located east of WestWorld and set to go to auction in late December, with a starting bid for the 7 acres at $1.15 million. If the city wins this auction, it will build 4-7 sports fields at the WestWorld Sports Complex, with the ability to park about 3,500 vehicles during special events.