The city of Huber Heights has taken two big steps forward in developing the Heights project.
The city’s staff is recommending that Messer Construction be awarded the contract to build the city’s music center. And, the development agreement between the city and GoodSports Enterprises, a company that will build a $22 million fieldhouse/hotel next to the music center, was signed Wednesday.
“This is the right thing to do, I’m convinced,” Mayor Ron Fisher said. “This will start bringing people there, and it’s going to market itself.”
City staff recommended to the administration committee Thursday afternoon to award Messer the contract. Council is expected to vote on the contract Monday night.
Messer’s bid was the lowest at nearly $11.8 million. Messer built the PNC Pavilion at Riverbend in Cincinnati, the venue that Huber Heights is modeling its music center after. The other three bids were: Brumbaugh ($11.86 million); Thomas & Marker ($12.3 million); and Wenco ($12.4 million).
The city budgeted $12 million for this portion of the total $18 million music center project, project manager Ken Conaway said.
Besides construction of the venue, the bid also includes landscaping, irrigation, paving and utilities, said Scott Falkowski, Huber Heights assistant city manager.
“They are all quality companies and they’ve done projects like this before,” Falkowski said. “What we get with Messer is they’ve done the closest thing to what we’re doing. We’re relatively confident they’re a good choice.”
Construction on the 4,500-seat covered venue is expected to start in early October and be completed in late summer 2014. Site work for the music center started last month.
The site is on 33.6 acres of land along the south side of Executive Boulevard, west of Meijer near the Interstate 70 and Ohio 201 interchange. The music center will be at the west end of the property, with GoodSports’ fieldhouse/hotel between it and Meijer.
“This confirms that what we’re doing is right,” Falkowski said. “When city council made the decision to move forward with the music center as an anchor to the Heights, the plan all along was to draw development. This is a great next piece, and there’s going to be more that comes after that.”
According to the development agreement, Huber Heights will contribute about $2 million in incentives to GoodSports to construct a 60,000-square-foot fieldhouse that also will feature a 115-room athlete-centric hotel and a restaurant.
Anthony Homer, GoodSports vice president of development, said the company is scheduled to close on the financing for six projects, including the Huber Heights facility, on Nov. 15. Construction is expected to begin around Jan. 1. The construction build-out is 10 months for the fieldhouse and 12 months for the hotel, Homer said.
As part of the $2 million incentive package, the city will give GoodSports approximately eight acres of land; build a shared parking lot with the music center of 400 spaces; construct and extend water and sewer lines to the site; and provide public sidewalks and landscaping.
None of the city’s incentives will take effect until GoodSports’ detailed development plan is approved and construction has started. Deadline for GoodSports to file its detailed development plan is Dec. 1.
The land will be turned back over to the city if construction doesn’t start by April 1, 2014, or if the fieldhouse/hotel is not open by April 1, 2015.
“It’s no longer without set deadlines and responsibilities,” Homer said. “We know we’ve got to deliver. We’ve been slow getting into it. We didn’t want to commit to something unless we could deliver. We wanted to take our time up front. We’re excited to finally have our ducks in a row and move forward with confidence.”