Sports complex to host first softball game

Biloxi’s new sports complex, a 70-acre site south of Popp’s Ferry and Cedar Lake roads, will host its first event this evening when Biloxi faces East Central in a 6 p.m. girls high school softball game.

Three of the five phases of the planned $10 million complex have been completed: three softball fields, four soccer fields, concession stands, restrooms, lighting and parking.

By Fall 2004, the facility will have its fourth softball field, an adult baseball field, five Little League fields, additional lighting and a concession building.

“This has been a huge undertaking, and we’re delighted to be able to begin play at this impressive facility,” Mayor A.J. Holloway said. “Participation in our city youth leagues has skyrocketed since we abolished fees a few years ago, and this facility will help meet our needs, as well as those of the school system. The complex also is in a great location, with easy access from the school as well as Interstate 10, so it’s going to be quite an asset for the people of Biloxi and in neighboring communities.”

Holloway noted that Harrison County has helped fund portions of the project, including as much as $600,000 in cash and in-kind services.

The project, which is being overseen by Biloxi Parks and Recreation Director Nathan Sullivan, began in 2001 when city contractors began clearing 68.8 acres of school-owned land near the new Biloxi High School off Richard Drive.

To see an aerial photo from May of the new sports complex in the city’s online Photo Gallery, click here.

To see an updated site plan for the overall complex in the city’s online Major Projects listing, click here.

The phases of the Biloxi sports complex

Phase I

Clearing land, earthwork, and utility construction

– $1.32 million

Phase II

Construct concession and restroom building for five-plex, bleacher pavilions and scorers booths

– $742,000

– Completed

Phase III

Construct three softball fields, four soccer fields, concession and restroom buildings, lighting, roads and parking

– $2.6 million

— Completed

Phase IV

Construct fourth softball field, one adult baseball field, five Little League fields, lighting and concession building.

–$3.25 million, estimated.

–Expected completion: Fall 2004

Phase V

Maintenance facility, water well, four tennis courts

–$1.4 million, estimate

–Timetable TBA