Davis County may add water shares for soccer-complex plans

Feb 20 2012 - 8:00pm

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FARMINGTON -- If the Legacy Events Center grounds are going to eventually expand to include a $302,000 four-field soccer complex, it's going to need more water.

The Davis County Commission is scheduled to hear at 10 a.m. today at the Memorial County Courthouse, a petition for the county to buy an additional 2.9 acre-feet of irrigation water from the Weber Basin Water Conservancy District for the future growth at Legacy Events Center, officials said.

At the meeting, the commission also will discuss making application to the water management district to transfer existing irrigation water shares -- belonging to Davis County Public Works but not currently being used -- to the ownership of the events center, 151 S. 1100 West, Farmington.

Davis County Commissioner John Petroff Jr. said the county is petitioning for additional irrigation water shares from the district to move forward with its plan of developing soccer fields on the center grounds.

The water is needed to irrigate the additional green space, Petroff said.

Since May 2011, county officials have been talking with city leaders about adding a four-field soccer complex to the center grounds to meet the recreation needs of the entire county.

The soccer fields would be developed on 10 acres on the southeast portion of the center property, Davis County Legacy Events Center Director Dave Hansen said.

Initial estimates put the cost of developing the four fields at $302,000, Hansen said.

Farmington Mayor Scott Harbertson said he supports the concept to the point of looking at expanding the county's idea by developing two more city soccer fields on 20 acres of city-owned land south of the county center.

Adding two soccer fields to the county's four fields would allow the soccer complex to draw the larger weekend tournaments, Harbertson said, while giving Farmington the fields it needs during the week for city soccer leagues.

"We're very interested in working with the county to expand," Harbertson said.

In the event the county brings in a larger national soccer tournament versus the regional tournaments that are held, Harbertson said, the two additional city fields could be used to accommodate the larger group.

"What we're trying to do is to attract more people to that area," Harbertson said of the joint soccer-field project that remains part of the city's plans.

Utah Youth Soccer Association, Davis Area Convention & Visitor's Bureau and Kaysville City Parks and Recreation, have all publicly stated they support the county concept because of the lack of playing fields for teen and adult competitive soccer leagues.

Kaysville City Parks Director Cole Stephens said the county developing the fields will help alleviate the strain being placed on the Kaysville fields.

"It just keeps getting bigger and bigger, with more participants each year," Stephens said. "We're very supportive of the county's desire to put in four fields."

The biggest concern the Utah Youth Soccer Association faces is the lack of playing fields, said Dave Mills, chairman of UYSA District No. 4, which covers Bountiful to North Ogden.

Potential funding sources to develop the county fields include the use of tourism tax revenues, as soccer events draw visitors from outside the area, and flood-control funds, as the fields could serve as a flood detention basin.

Hansen said he hopes the county would make a return on its investment through the dollars soccer participants and spectators spend in the community while attending the games and tournaments.

 

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