VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - The Sports Center near the Oceanfront opened Thursday.
City council members, reporters, and guests got tours of the $68 million dollar facility, which is located across from the Convention Center.
Eastern Sports Management will operate the center. It includes 12 basketball courts, 24 volleyball courts, a 200 meter track and seating for 5,000 people.
City leaders have described it as a “one-of-a-kind” sports facility that will compete nationally for major sports events.
"We are ready to take our destination to the next level and the Sports Center will help us attract those big tournaments and major league play that creates year round activity," said Mayor Bobby Dyer.
The center has already booked 54 events with more to come. In addition, leagues are being created where children through adults can play sports like basketball and volleyball.
"The goal is to have activity in this building almost every day of the week, meaning league play Monday through Thursday and a tournament Friday, Saturday, Sunday," said Nancy Helman, the Director of Virginia Beach's sports marketing.
The 285,000 square-foot facility is opening during a pandemic, something the city is preparing for. "We have COVID mitigation plans for every event that's coming into this building and really safety is our number one priority," said Helman.