A Weekly Column
by Mary Wilson
Mary Wilson, editor of the Jackson County Advocate newspaper, grew up in the Grandview community. She currently serves as President of Grandview Main Street and works as a development coordinator for the Grandview Education Foundation. She also serves on the Missouri Press Board of Directors and the Kansas City Press Club Board of Directors. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
November 9, 2017
It’s officially fall. The trees in this part of the country are gorgeous this time of year. I’ve unboxed my sweaters and dusted off my boots to help combat the chill in the air. We’ve trick-or-treated and we are now gearing up for Thanksgiving with our families. However, I’ve noticed something missing in this community this season. Where’s the soccer complex?
First announced to the public in May of 2015, Gateway Village, originally a $300 million all-turf soccer complex located off of 150 Highway in Grandview was to be a flagship project for the State of Missouri. At least, that’s how it was touted by the project investors, local politicians and the like.
First, we were told that soccer games could begin as early as the spring of 2016. We saw that time-frame quickly dissipate, and then were told to set our sights on 14 soccer fields being completed by spring of this year. Once spring hit, we were told last April that games would begin in the fall. Since then, it’s been radio silence, and the rumor mill has been churning.
On August 9, 2016, developers and city officials broke ground on the property. Big construction vehicles were on the property and, it appeared, that the development was on the move. However, shortly after that, the movement stalled on the property located between Byars and Kelley roads.
I know that discussions are surely taking place behind closed doors. I’ve heard talk of a financial shortfall on the side of the developers with which they are seeking support. I’ve seen announcements of new development partnerships, while original partners seem to have disappeared without acknowledgment. And, I see a property that doesn’t look much different from a year ago at this time, except for maybe some taller grass that needs mowed.
Where does the Gateway Village project stand? The community is excited about the prospect, and we are supportive of those willing to invest a great deal into our town. But, we are growing impatient. The public deserves to know what the holdup is, and, who knows, maybe a few of us can even offer recommendations. We’re just waiting to be asked and informed.
Tweets by @MWilsonJCA