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Community partners attend groundbreaking for PSU's indoor event - KOAM TV 7

Community partners attend groundbreaking for PSU's indoor event center

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The new indoor event center is made possible through partnerships with students, alumni, private donors and the City of Pittsburg.

Some of the funds for the $13 million dollar project will come from Pittsburg's economic development sales tax.

City officials say the well being of the university contributes to the success of the city.

"We know what's good for one is good for the other." said Pittsburg City Commissioner Patrick O' Bryan.

The university is the city's largest employer and economic engine.

To fuel that engine Pittsburg City Commissioners approved $1.5 million dollars up front for the new indoor event center.

Over the next 20 years the city will pay $175,00 dollars. All together $5 million dollars will come from the city's economic development sales tax.

"We have a quarter cents sales tax that goes towards economic development," said Pittsburg City Manager Daron Hall.

Pittsburg Mayor Michael Gray addressed the crowd of students, alumni, donors, and guest at Tuesday's groundbreaking. Saying he believes the city will see a return on the investment.

"If you just look at the sales tax dollars alone that this will bring to the city over time that alone is significant," said Gray.

The economic development sales tax was approved by voters five years ago. Each allocation for funds is looked at by an citizens advisory committee, then approved at the commission level.

Two NCAA Track Championship are planed at the new event center in 2016 and 2018. County leaders say those two events combined could bring in $3 to $5 million dollars.


NEWS RELEASE ISSUED BY PITTSBURG STATE UNIVERSITY

Work begins on indoor event center

Contractors have used a few days of recent good weather to begin site work on Pittsburg State University's new indoor event center, creating a buzz on campus and in the community.

"We will have a formal groundbreaking ceremony in late February or early March to make it official, but we didn't want to wait a day longer than necessary to get to work on this great addition to the campus and the community," said PSU President Steve Scott.

The president said the project is funded through our partnership with the city, our students and private donors. No state funds will be used in the project.

Pittsburg Mayor Michael Gray said the entire community was eager for the construction to begin.

"Citizens of Pittsburg are always interested in developments at Pittsburg State," Gray said. "It's been fascinating to watch the construction of the Center for the Arts this past year. But the community has an even greater reason to be interested in the indoor events center because we have invested in it. This is going to have a positive impact on the entire community."

The indoor event center is being built adjacent to Pittsburg State's Weede PE Building. The facility, encompassing more than 154,000 square feet, will include a 100-yard turf field, an 11,000-square-foot state-of-the-art strength facility, a 300-meter track and seating for up to 1,500. It will also include locker rooms for men's and women's track and football, offices and meeting rooms. Completion is expected by the spring of 2015.

The planned construction of the indoor event center was key in the NCAA's choice of Pittsburg State to host the 2016 and 2018 Men's and Women's Indoor Track Championships.

Jim Johnson, director of Intercollegiate Athletics, said the indoor event center is a key piece of the facilities puzzle that strengthens the university and the community.

"This is an important step in our ongoing effort to provide an infrastructure that benefits student athletes, the university and the wider community," Johnson said.

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