The Kansas Department of Commerce has approved a Sales Tax and Revenue (STAR) Bond for the Sports of the World Complex in Garden City, marking a major milestone in the development of the facility.
The Sports of the World complex, a more than $30 million project, envisions a major multi-sport athletic complex, including indoor and outdoor facilities and stadium that can accommodate ice skating, hockey, soccer, rugby and more, to be located on approximately 32 acres on the east side of Garden City near Stone Development and Schulman Crossing, according to a news release.
Late Wednesday afternoon, the City of Garden City received notice from Interim Secretary of Commerce Nick Jordan that the project was approved and that KDOC had authorized the issuance of $25.4 million in revenue bonds.
Mayor Roy Cessna expressed his enthusiasm and his gratitude to those who were involved in helping move the project along.
“This is an exciting time for Garden City,” Cessna said. “This project has been in the making for a long time, and we wouldn’t be at this stage without the dedicated work of City staff and our community partners.”
Finney County Economic Development Corporation shepherded the project through the City’s approval process until an investor was identified.
“This is a great project for our region and will go a long way toward meeting some of our community enhancement goals,” FCEDC President Lona DuVall said. “It’s been a pleasure for our office to work on, and we look forward to the increased visitation and economic activity once it’s built.”
According to City staff, KDOC’s approval is the first in a four-stage process to complete the Sports of the World Complex. Stage two is the negotiation of a developer’s agreement with GC Investments, Inc., the project developer. Stage three is the private placement of the revenue bonds with investors. Finally, stage four is the construction of the complex.
GC Investments, Inc. spokesperson HJ Swender said he expects the remaining stages to move much more quickly than stage one did.
“Certainly the drafting of a development agreement requires a lot of time and attention, but GC Investments, Inc. is excited about this project, and we know there is great enthusiasm in the regional sports community for it,” Swender said. “We plan to finalize the development agreement and start construction in the near future.”
According to the Department of Commerce’s website, STAR bonds provide Kansas municipalities the opportunity to issue bonds to finance the development of major commercial, entertainment and tourism areas and use the sales tax revenue generated by the development to pay off the bonds. The STAR bond is not a new tax.
For more information regarding the project, contact GC Investments, Inc., spokesperson HJ Swender at (620) 275-2963. For more information about the history of establishing the STAR bond district or the project plan, contact City Manager Matt Allen at (620) 276-1160.