The anticipated Western Wake Competition Center in Morrisville is on track to begin construction this summer after concerns it might not come together.
The timing of nearby road construction nearly derailed the $14 million multi-sport complex last year.
But with town and state officials promising to fast-track the completion of the McCrimmon Parkway Extension, and with developers able to find land connected to a smaller existing road, the project was reinvigorated this week.
Monday, developer Jeff Ammons and real estate firm CBRE Raleigh announced that Ammons had purchased the 30 acres his project will require for $2.9 million.
It will host a gymnastics center, two ice hockey rinks, eight volleyball courts and two soccer fields.
“Plus there’ll be a few other add-ons maybe, like a restaurant or retail,” Ammons said. “We haven’t gotten that sorted out yet, but it would sports-themed.”
Construction will begin in a few months, Ammons said, as long as permitting and development meetings with the town go well. If so, he said, it could be open for business by this time in 2018.
“I’m hoping it (takes) two years or better,” he said. “So early ’18 is what I’m hoping. But I’ll have to wait and see.”
There has been talk about the Carolina Hurricanes possibly using the hockey facilities for practice, although Ammons said the two sides haven’t yet come to an agreement. In general, the facility is expected to host tournaments and draw tourism to Morrisville.
The received a $3 million grant from the Wake County Commissioners in 2014.
The project site is between Airport Boulevard and Aviation Parkway and has a connection to Nova Drive. Even if the McCrimmon Parkway Extension, which will connect those two roads, isn’t built by the time the complex is finished, Ammons said, visitors will still be able to access it.
But Ammons said he’s still hoping for a speedy finish to the McCrimmon Parkway Extension, which will take traffic off N.C. 54. Construction is being broken into two phases, with the entire project expected to be complete in fall 2018.
The land near the road construction includes some of the largest remaining tracts available for development in Morrisville.
There are about 400 acres of land there, including the 30 that Ammons just bought, that town officials have said they believe will mostly become commercial developments like the competition center.
Residential projects are less likely, they’ve said, due to the land’s proximity to Raleigh-Durham International Airport.
Doran: 919-460-2604; Twitter: @will_doran