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Newnan eyes sports complex, trail system

  • By Rebecca Leftwich
  • |
  • Sep. 19, 2016 - 3:02 PM

Newnan eyes sports complex, trail system

Rebecca Leftwich / The Newnan Times-Herald

Mayor Keith Brady told Rotarians and guests that Newnan officials are looking at the feasibility of a sports complex and trail system to fill recreational gaps for residents.

Newnan’s finances are in good shape, business and housing are steady, schools are excellent, medical facilities abound and several major improvement projects already are in the works.

What’s missing? More recreational opportunities, according to Mayor Keith Brady.

Brady said the city will be working to determine whether Newnan can support a recreation complex capable of hosting large-scale tournaments and events.

“How many of you are parents or grandparents who have traveled with a child to a baseball, softball, volleyball, cheerleading, swimming, you-name-it event where they were on a travel team?” Brady asked club members and guests at Friday’s meeting of the Newnan Rotary Club. “Have you ever stayed home for one? You haven’t because it’s not here.”

Brady said city officials will give Newnan Council members an opportunity to vote on a study to examine the feasibility of a “first-class sports complex.”

“That’s the only way we would do it, is first-class,” he said. “If you build it and it doesn’t compete at a high level with all the others, you might as well not build it at all.”

The sports complex would provide a destination for competitive baseball and softball with multi-purpose fields for lacrosse, soccer and flag football, according to Brady. He said it also would include an indoor events center that would provide opportunities for volleyball and cheerleading competitions and possibly an aquatic center.

“We’ll be looking at that sometime in the next month to approve, or not, a feasibility study to go out into the marketplace and find out what it would be like to have that type of facility in Newnan,” Brady said. “It’s the next big thing.”

Another study may be on the horizon as city officials meet with a local group of advocates for a trail system similar to Carrollton’s Greenbelt or Atlanta’s Beltline.

“We’re going to be approached by this group to partner with them on a feasibility study for that type of activity,” he said. “So, two big things coming up for us in recreation that I think fill the gap of some of the things that we need to continue to build a city that brings quality of life to our citizens.”