Olathe may be the next city in the area to get a new soccer complex with developer Michael Christie pitching a $27 million project to city officials this week.
Christie, a developer with Ridgeview Equities in Lenexa, has a plan to build nine soccer fields, roughly 27,000 square feet of new retail and a 120-room hotel on 96 acres southwest of Ridgeview Road and Kansas 10.
If it comes to pass, Christie’s project would add to the area’s supply of real estate developments anchored by outdoor soccer fields.
Pete Heaven, a Lathrop & Gage real estate attorney who is representing Christie in his pursuit of the Olathe soccer project, said it would be similar to the Scheels Overland Park Soccer Complex near 135th Street and Switzer Road. Both are on 96 acres, but the Overland Park complex consists of 12 fields while the Olathe project would include adjoining retail and hotel development.
In addition to those two Johnson County soccer developments, Kansas City, Mo., opened Swope Soccer Village, which has nine soccer fields. In Grandview, developers including former Kansas City Chiefs player Deron Cherry are working on a 230-acre development anchored by 15 soccer fields. Also, the Wyandotte County Youth Soccer Complex, which consists of 12 fields, is set to open this summer.
The Olathe City Council on Tuesday will discuss a pre-development agreement with Christie and Ridgeview Equities. That agreement would have Christie covering the city’s costs to evaluate the project and its request for public financial assistance.
Christie will request a combination of tax increment financing, industrial revenue bonds and a community improvement district to help pay for certain project costs.
Tax increment financing, or TIF, captures new property and sales taxes generated by a development, which can be used to pay for eligible project costs. A community improvement district, or CID, allows a developer to add an additional sales tax on purchases within a development project — in Christie’s case, an additional 1 percent on top of local and state sales tax — to help finance the project.
Olathe’s Tuesday meeting is just a discussion, and signing a pre-development agreeement does not commit the city to approving any of those development finance tools.
Christie had pursued a $94 million project in Lenexa for futsal, a version of indoor soccer. Heaven said that development is on hold while plans to extend Ridgeview Road north to Prairie Star Parkway remain up in the air.