How much will it cost to build the complex and how will this be paid?
The complex will cost approximately $18 million with additional cost for public improvements (entrances and interior roadways.) The project will be paid for through local and state funding, grants, and private loans.
How will the complex afford operations in the long term?
The complex will be self-sustained through its operational income. Outlined in its detailed business plan, Prospect Meadows foresees a $3 million budget once fully operational. These numbers are based on data from similar complexes in other areas of the country, Perfect Game USA and the local Convention and Visitors Bureau. After ensuring the complex is maintained and has funds for reserve, Prospect Meadows plans to donate a portion of net proceeds back to the community.
How many people are expected to attend events at the complex?
More than 60,000 out-of-the-area visitors will come to the area each year for games, filling 60,000 hotel room nights due to extended stays. All in all, more than 120,000 unique people will visit Prospect Meadows annually.
Softball and baseball games and leagues will be scheduled by appointment. The complex will help fulfill the need for fields due to the shortage in the area. Additionally, families with children in different age brackets often have to go to multiple locations/cities for tournaments at the same time. Due to the number of fields at Prospect Meadows, multiple tournaments may be held at one time, lessening the need for families to split among several locations.
Prospect Meadows will work collaboratively with existing fields. The larger fields at Prospect Meadows will be utilized an estimated 60 percent of the time by Perfect Game-hosted tournaments, keeping the need for existing fields for other games. Also, existing fields could be used as warm-up fields for these major tournaments or as additional fields for extremely large tournaments.
Where will the complex be located?
The complex will be located on 121 acres northeast of Marion, just south of County Home Rd. and east of Highway 13—easy access from I-380 and Highways 30 and 151. Entrances will be located off of both County Home Rd. and Highway 13.
How many fields will there be?
There will be 17 fields: eight will have fences at 380 feet; another eight will have fences at 300 feet; and one will be the Miracle Field for persons with disabilities. There will be seating and lights, as well as sound systems and scoreboards. Additionally, there will be concessions, restrooms and press boxes.
What else will be available in addition to the fields?
The complex will include 1,200 parking spaces, a two-acre flower garden, a walking trail, a supervised playground and a recreational pond. Existing wetlands will be expanded.
"Green" components will include high-efficiency lighting, low-volume plumbing with timed shut-offs, and the use of solar power is being explored. Bio swales and multiple rain gardens are proposed to address run-off, rain water-capture via the pond and roofs for irrigation and storm water best practices will be incorporated.
When will Prospect Meadows break ground and when will it open?
Prospect Meadows' ground breaking for Phase I is slated for the Fall of 2017. Construction will take approximately one year. The facility will be operational in 2018. Phase II design and construction will follow shortly after opening the complex..
What are the benefits of having this complex in the Cedar Rapids-Marion metro area?
The benefits are numerous and speak to the importance of having such a complex as part of a metro area with a large population center right there.
Tournament groups are going to want to be right by hotels, convenience stores, entertainment, restaurants, shopping and other amenities. When groups or players leave for or return from a tournament, or have a break between games, being just a few minutes from their hotel, restaurants and other facilities is important.
Having enough hotels, restaurants, and other facilities is critical. One tournament in the Council Bluffs-Omaha area serves 530 teams over a two-week period, with 486 of those teams from out of the area. Forty states are represented, bringing 22,000 people with a $12.3 economic impact.
For very large tournaments, collaborations with other close and accessible ball fields in the Cedar Rapids-Marion metro area will be key for additional games.
Commercial developers will be attracted to the population center of the Cedar Rapids-Marion metro area. Those building new hotels, restaurants, shops, and other facilities near the complex will thrive from the prime ball season when Prospect Meadows will mainly operate. In the off season, they will want a local and large enough population base to utilize their services.
Having enough population nearby to recruit employees is important.
Cedar Rapids-based Perfect Game USA, the world's biggest baseball scouting service, runs the largest full-field baseball events in the nation and anticipates heavy tournament usage of Prospect Meadows.
Prospect Meadows has researched the viability of its vision and has developed a realistic business plan based on research from other facilities in similar-sized communities with similar climates.
Prospect Meadows understands the community will support the complex and in turn wants to support the community. It is a nonprofit that will give back a portion of its proceeds each year to the area. Additionally, part of its mission is to allow everyone the opportunity to play and enjoy ball and benefit from the lessons the game provides. The Miracle Field and at-risk league provide these opportunities.
Who owns the complex?
Prospect Meadows Inc., a nonprofit 501(c)(3), holds the complex and overall responsibility of it.
How will the complex be managed?
Day-to-day operations will be handled by a General Manager and staff who are employed by Prospect Meadows.
How many employees/jobs will be created?
Prospect Meadows will create 155 full-time and part-time jobs with an annual payroll of more than $600,000.
What is the overall economic impact of the complex?
Prospect Meadows will create $20 million in direct spending in the area each year. This is anticipated being mainly new revenue to the area.