Chesterfield picks contractor to build new $9M fields at River City Sportsplex

eventmakers2 scaled

River City Sportsplex is planned to be expanded by four additional fields, which would bring the venue to a total of 16 sports fields. (BizSense file)

Chesterfield aims to open new fields at River City Sportsplex later this year and has just named the general contractor to oversee the construction.

County supervisors on Wednesday approved a $9.2 million contract with New York-based Landtek Group Inc. to build four new synthetic turf athletic fields at the county-owned 115-acre sports complex near Brandermill.

The upcoming fields are expected to be playable in October and come in the first construction phase of a larger renovation and expansion project planned at the Sportsplex, which hosts visiting youth sports tournaments as well as local events.

The quartet of new fields will bring the venue to a total of 16 fields. The new fields are slated to take shape on undeveloped land next to several existing fields in the rear of the sports complex. Construction is scheduled to start in March.

The expansion will bring modern synthetic turf facilities to the venue and allow it to more easily hold more than one tournament at a time and attract larger tournaments, thereby increasing the economic impact of the facility, according to J.C. Poma, the county’s executive director of sports, visitation and entertainment.

“We can have one large tournament that’s using 16 fields, or you could have a nine-field soccer tournament going on up front and a seven-field field hockey tournament going on in the back,” he said. “Four more fields, at minimum, can get you 48 more teams that come to the area.”

J c Poma chesterfield

J.C. Poma

Poma said the complex has generated more than $600 million in economic impact for the region since the county acquired the property. Visitor spending includes stays in hotels and meals at local restaurants while they attend tournaments. Chesterfield has reaped an estimated $11 million in direct tax revenue because of sports tourism visitors to the Sportsplex, he said.

The Sportsplex held tournaments on 31 weekends last year, Poma said. It’s expected to host tournaments on 35 to 37 weekends of 2024, including soccer, flag football, field hockey and lacrosse events.

The new fields will feature organic materials that are cooler on summer days and more akin to the experience of playing on grass compared with the facility’s existing fields made with recycled tires, said Neil Luther, director of Parks and Recreation.

“These (new fields) are going to go with basically a pine forest product that comes from Georgia. … The fields have sand and this organic infill in them instead of the traditional crumb rubber,” Luther said. “It tends to be the norm now industrywide. It’s a little more environmentally responsible and it reduces the heat load on the field so it gives a better player experience. It also more closely replicates natural turf in terms of ball speed and player contact.”

Chesterfield-based Timmons Group was tapped to handle the design of the project.

In addition to the creation of the four fields, the contract with Landtek Group includes the expansion of the venue’s existing football field into a regulation-sized soccer field, though that project is slated to come after the completion of the new fields.

Chesterfield anticipates that its planned projects at the Sportsplex, which are outlined in a 2021 master plan, will cost an estimated total of $21.8 million. Funding for the projects has already been earmarked, with most of it – $17.2 million – covered by proceeds tied to Chesterfield’s 2022 bond referendum.

To date, Chesterfield has completed or has planned $29.6 million in improvements to the Sportsplex since the county acquired the complex in 2016.

Future phases are planned to include what Poma calls a “championship” field, with about 1,500 fixed seats and amenities to provide a more elevated playing experience.

Also planned are terraced seating built into a hill in the center of the complex, in addition to amenities such as a playground, walking trails and other features intended to be used by local residents and visitors.

“Spending two days at a sports complex is a family proposition. It’s not just coming out to play on the field. It’s also about mom, dad, grandma and grandad and the other kids,” Luther said “Those (amenities) then blend into recreational opportunities our community is going to choose as well.”

More than 90 local groups used River City for events in fiscal year 2023, and local events accounted for about 66 percent of the use of the facility during that time frame, according to the county.

Teams from county high schools and local recreational leagues use the venue’s fields, and other events such as the Chesterfield After Hours concert series also take place at River City.

eventmakers2 scaled

River City Sportsplex is planned to be expanded by four additional fields, which would bring the venue to a total of 16 sports fields. (BizSense file)

Chesterfield aims to open new fields at River City Sportsplex later this year and has just named the general contractor to oversee the construction.

County supervisors on Wednesday approved a $9.2 million contract with New York-based Landtek Group Inc. to build four new synthetic turf athletic fields at the county-owned 115-acre sports complex near Brandermill.

The upcoming fields are expected to be playable in October and come in the first construction phase of a larger renovation and expansion project planned at the Sportsplex, which hosts visiting youth sports tournaments as well as local events.

The quartet of new fields will bring the venue to a total of 16 fields. The new fields are slated to take shape on undeveloped land next to several existing fields in the rear of the sports complex. Construction is scheduled to start in March.

The expansion will bring modern synthetic turf facilities to the venue and allow it to more easily hold more than one tournament at a time and attract larger tournaments, thereby increasing the economic impact of the facility, according to J.C. Poma, the county’s executive director of sports, visitation and entertainment.

“We can have one large tournament that’s using 16 fields, or you could have a nine-field soccer tournament going on up front and a seven-field field hockey tournament going on in the back,” he said. “Four more fields, at minimum, can get you 48 more teams that come to the area.”

J c Poma chesterfield

J.C. Poma

Poma said the complex has generated more than $600 million in economic impact for the region since the county acquired the property. Visitor spending includes stays in hotels and meals at local restaurants while they attend tournaments. Chesterfield has reaped an estimated $11 million in direct tax revenue because of sports tourism visitors to the Sportsplex, he said.

The Sportsplex held tournaments on 31 weekends last year, Poma said. It’s expected to host tournaments on 35 to 37 weekends of 2024, including soccer, flag football, field hockey and lacrosse events.

The new fields will feature organic materials that are cooler on summer days and more akin to the experience of playing on grass compared with the facility’s existing fields made with recycled tires, said Neil Luther, director of Parks and Recreation.

“These (new fields) are going to go with basically a pine forest product that comes from Georgia. … The fields have sand and this organic infill in them instead of the traditional crumb rubber,” Luther said. “It tends to be the norm now industrywide. It’s a little more environmentally responsible and it reduces the heat load on the field so it gives a better player experience. It also more closely replicates natural turf in terms of ball speed and player contact.”

Chesterfield-based Timmons Group was tapped to handle the design of the project.

In addition to the creation of the four fields, the contract with Landtek Group includes the expansion of the venue’s existing football field into a regulation-sized soccer field, though that project is slated to come after the completion of the new fields.

Chesterfield anticipates that its planned projects at the Sportsplex, which are outlined in a 2021 master plan, will cost an estimated total of $21.8 million. Funding for the projects has already been earmarked, with most of it – $17.2 million – covered by proceeds tied to Chesterfield’s 2022 bond referendum.

To date, Chesterfield has completed or has planned $29.6 million in improvements to the Sportsplex since the county acquired the complex in 2016.

Future phases are planned to include what Poma calls a “championship” field, with about 1,500 fixed seats and amenities to provide a more elevated playing experience.

Also planned are terraced seating built into a hill in the center of the complex, in addition to amenities such as a playground, walking trails and other features intended to be used by local residents and visitors.

“Spending two days at a sports complex is a family proposition. It’s not just coming out to play on the field. It’s also about mom, dad, grandma and grandad and the other kids,” Luther said “Those (amenities) then blend into recreational opportunities our community is going to choose as well.”

More than 90 local groups used River City for events in fiscal year 2023, and local events accounted for about 66 percent of the use of the facility during that time frame, according to the county.

Teams from county high schools and local recreational leagues use the venue’s fields, and other events such as the Chesterfield After Hours concert series also take place at River City.

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George MacGuffin
George MacGuffin
1 month ago

I’m quite surprised to learn that River City recently replaced their existing turf fields using heavy-metal laden and childhood cancer linked ground tire filled synthetic turf. The Warhill complex in Williamsburg replaced their turf fields with ground coconut fill not long ago. Warhill, a competitor for tournaments, also offers tastefully landscaped grounds, paved walkways, multiple restrooms, a stadium, natural grass fields, and a playground. The rather new Glover Park in Glen Allen also offers a more attractive and thoughtfully designed site than River City, although I am unsure what fill they use in their turf (I do understand the site’s… Read more »

David Humphrey
David Humphrey
1 month ago

Glover Park is cork or coconut and there is room for a stadium and additional fields. Once again, Henrico vs Chesterfield…

George MacGuffin
George MacGuffin
1 month ago
Reply to  David Humphrey

Oh my! You went there.

It’s only a matter of time before Elkanah Bent arrives from the southern reaches of the fields of Chester demanding “satisfaction”.

Scott Brown
Scott Brown
1 month ago
Reply to  David Humphrey

Chesterfield needs to step up the efforts for indoor sports as well. Henrico has a big headstart. This needs to include indoor track and futsal as well has other outdoor sports with an indoor version and not just sports that where made to play indoors like basketball and volleyball.
Ease of access from 95, 295, or 288 should also be considered.

Michael Morgan-Dodson
Michael Morgan-Dodson
1 month ago

One has to seriously wonder about that Lake project; they have broken ground but not a lot going up. I mean their website is stale dated and you can’t even reserve or find the agent managing the residential apartments. The last I read Phase 1 and the lake (not surfing water lake itself) would open in late 2023. Last I saw it looked like site grading and infrastructure was still going in (Dec 2023). I mean no a single tenant name has been released for retail???

George MacGuffin
George MacGuffin
1 month ago

Last I read, perhaps here, is that the county required them to include a parking structure.