Veterans Park Tennis Complex

It's nice to see the city wanting to expand recreational opportunities in our community.

In our last community, our Homeowners Association had an elaborate pool and tennis complex.  The swimming pool upkeep and maintenance was very expensive every year.  Our problem was the expense of re-doing our four tennis courts every few years--courts used by a relatively few people.  We had a difficult time cash flowing tennis court repairs even with 400 homeowners in the neighborhood.

I cannot imagine the upkeep, maintenance and costs of running a 31 tennis court complex.  Does the City of Florence realize how much it's going to cost every year--on top of the initial cost of the project?  Does the city have that much money for the enjoyment of relatively few citizens?

 

 

Original Post

I had always thought that if it was possible the best use of that area would be to allow Bass Pro Shops to build a location there.  Trouble is this area is far too small and not near a major interstate and that's where Bass Pro likes to locate, larger population centers and close to an interstate.  Still it would make a great location and in an area that is known for sports as well as being direct access to the river. 

From what I understand though because it's a commercial venture TVA would not allow the property to be used in that way.  I don't know maybe I'm wrong about that but getting a Bass Pro Shop in the Shoals area is about as likely as that huge amusement park actually breaking ground.    That's another thing you'll never hear anything about and it does make you wonder where they ever got the idea to announce something like that in the first place.  From what I understand the major partners that were associated with it are dealing with a host of legal problems so maybe they will blame their legal problems on the fact that it will never be built. 

I just think it was a no go from the beginning and many others felt that way also.  Granted it was nice thinking about the possibilities though if something large was to come to the area.   Then again being small and quaint is one thing that makes this area as attractive as it is. 

Bass Pro at this point would be redundant.  

The difference between a homeowner's association's tennis courts and a city's tennis complex should be obvious.  But here are a couple.  Homeowners association - a hundred people, maybe.  Florence 40,000; metropolitan area 100,000.  Homeowners association - no revenue from courts.  Florence complex - I would assume would have revenue from fees and sales that would be used for maintenance.   Homeowner's association - does not attract tennis tournaments.   Florence complex - should attract tournaments = $$$$$.

 

 

Bass Pro at this point would be redundant. - Crusty

How so, Crusty?  Because of Gander Mountain competition?  Or something else?

Seems I remember BassPro / Sweetwater wanted Florence to give them Veteran's Park.  After being denied, they were trying to work another gimme deal with Decatur and Limestone county with plans to build off I-65 between Decatur & Huntsville, but that fell through in 2014.  For BP to build anywhere around Huntsville would be redundant as they have recently purchased Cabelas for $5.5 million. and Cabela's has a new store in Madison and a GM right down the road on Memorial Parkway.  BP's largest store is in Leeds on an I-20 exit.

 

Yes, Gander Mountain, plus the new Academy Sports and Outdoors.   We probably would not have gotten one of the big BassPros, but one more in line with the one in Memphis.  That one is just a Gander Mountain with the emphasis on fishing instead of hunting.

 

Interstate access is nice and GM et al would have nibbled competitively, but I'm thinking BassPro would have loved to have a place on the Tennessee River.  It would have been what it's all about.  Hosting bass tournaments and the like.  No telling how much the locals would have benefited from it.  Sales, boat mechanics, restaurants, motels, on and on.  Guarantee one thing, locals would have gotten more out of it than tennis courts.  Would have been nothing like that anywhere around.

But being redundant once more, they wanted Florence to give it to them.  Would it have been worth it?

How far is Leeds from any fishing water, anyway?

Don't we already have boat sales, bass tournaments, restaurants, motels, on and on?  Obviously Bass Pro doesn't see the same financial bonanza that you do.

Let's face it, Leeds = Birmingham + Mountainbrook.  B'ham metro population 1 million, plus.  Florence metro 100k.

Some fishing people voted Birmingham the Bass Fishing Capital of the World.

Google is your friend:  

http://www.hookandbullet.com/c/fishing-leeds-al/

http://birminghamal.org/wp-con...BhamBrochure2013.pdf

http://birminghamal.org/outdoors/fishing/

Looking at the map Lake Purdy is just south of Leeds.   Good pictures: http://www.lakepurdyfishing.com/

 

Don't we already have boat sales, bass tournaments, restaurants, motels, on and on?  Obviously Bass Pro doesn't see the same financial bonanza that you do. - Crusty.

If BassPro / Sweetwater didn't see financial opportunity in Florence, why did they want Veterans Park?  Why did BP and / or their reps approach Florence with an offer?  Remember, it was Florence, not BassPro, that did not want it to happen.  It was Florence's call all the way.

Far as tournaments, etc., you tell me what's the right number. If Florence can't use more employment, that's a wonderful thing.  On the other hand, I can understand why Florence did not want to donate Veterans Park to them.

Leeds' BPS was going to happen regardless of what happened in Florence, then Decatur, then not at all.  I was just comparing it to a location on the Tennessee River.  Call it local prejudice / pride if you will.  Mea culpa.

I'm sure Lake Purdy is a nice place.  OK.  Moving on . . .

Something you may did not find in the tourist brochures regarding the financial bonanza being reaped by the citizens of Leeds.

Leeds City Council approves restructuring of debt from Bass Pro Shops development

http://blog.al.com/spotnews/20...cil_approves_re.html

 

Charging for court use? As it stands now, city courts are free. It's speculated the Royal Avenue courts would become school property when larger complexes are built, but who really knows? There are so many private courts, it's hard to see how Veterans needs 31.

budsfarm posted:

Don't we already have boat sales, bass tournaments, restaurants, motels, on and on?  Obviously Bass Pro doesn't see the same financial bonanza that you do. - Crusty.

If BassPro / Sweetwater didn't see financial opportunity in Florence, why did they want Veterans Park?  Why did BP and / or their reps approach Florence with an offer?  Remember, it was Florence, not BassPro, that did not want it to happen.  It was Florence's call all the way.

Far as tournaments, etc., you tell me what's the right number. If Florence can't use more employment, that's a wonderful thing.  On the other hand, I can understand why Florence did not want to donate Veterans Park to them.

Leeds' BPS was going to happen regardless of what happened in Florence, then Decatur, then not at all.  I was just comparing it to a location on the Tennessee River.  Call it local prejudice / pride if you will.  Mea culpa.

I'm sure Lake Purdy is a nice place.  OK.  Moving on . . .

Something you may did not find in the tourist brochures regarding the financial bonanza being reaped by the citizens of Leeds.

Leeds City Council approves restructuring of debt from Bass Pro Shops development

http://blog.al.com/spotnews/20...cil_approves_re.html

 

You seem to think I'm arguing against fishing tournaments, fishing, and outdoors stores.  I'm not.  But to pose a question back at you, how many stores is the right number?  You tell me. 

Obviously BassPro wants the local communities to help fund their store.  You've proved my point that they didn't see the area as the same financial bonanza that you do.  If they ever decide to come here, I will welcome them with open arms, and wish them the best of luck, just like I do most any legitimate business that comes to the area. 

 

FVPOA posted:

Charging for court use? As it stands now, city courts are free. It's speculated the Royal Avenue courts would become school property when larger complexes are built, but who really knows? There are so many private courts, it's hard to see how Veterans needs 31.

Help me out.  How many private courts are there? 

When they were discussing the sports complex, what was your position?  Just trying to get a feel for where you are coming from.

 

as far as cost, will that be a shared cost with Colbert county?  The original deal was a joint county deal. Florence gave up the conference center for a dollar a year and got the hotel. Colbert county got the golf course. Both counties charged an extra gas tax (did that ever go away?).

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