Softball players from San Angelo and around the state will soon have a new place to play ball. The Rio Concho Sports Complex has been a project in the making for years. Now it looks like construction on the facility could begin in the near future.
Rick Weise, Assistant City Manager, said, "[It] is about a $9 million project that we'll be constructing. Costs have gone up but this one I think is something we'll all be proud of."
When bids first came in for the project, they were too high said Assistant City Manager Rick Weise. However, they were able to re-work some ideas to get the cost within the expected price range.
Weise said, "We went back and worked with the architects, did some redesign which did not change the number of fields or anything like that but it did change some of the building, construction practices."
The 15 field facility will also serve as a community park, similar to Kirby Park. Weise said despite the public's concerns about delays with the facility, the city had to make sure the project is done right.
He said, "It can't happen soon enough. We all are eager in anticipating that but when we design a project and build it, we want to make sure we build it right because we don't get to do this very often. Then of course, just like with any project, you have to make it come in to build what you want in the dollar frame you have."
If a bid is accepted by city council next week, it's still going to be some time before the orange netting is removed.
"I think from start to finish when they award, we're talking like 425 days for actual construction of the project so it's not something that's going to happen overnight," said Weise.
By doing the math, it will take about a year and two months for the complex to be finished. However Weise said some of the fields should be ready to use next summer. The bid is expected to be discussed at the city council meeting next Tuesday.