By Sam Poe
Tuesday, January 7, 2014 | 7:01 AM
In Monday's Haleyville City Council Meeting, the council approved H&K Sports Fields as the design firm for the Haleyville Sportsplex. There was only one other firm that made bids on the project, but that company usually completes projects much bigger than Haleyville's proposed sportsplex. Their bid was also much higher.
The council then discussed ideas for the complex with the meeting's attendees. Obviously, the council wants to include a variety of baseball and softball fields in the complex, but there are several possibilities as to what type of fields should be included. There will be several youth fields included, but the council will rely on the design firm to decide how many can be included with the current amount of land owned by the city. Also, the Haleyville Middle School baseball and softball teams do not have their own fields at the school to use. So there is a possibility that high school sized fields will also be included in the project, so the HMS teams will have their own fields. Those fields could also be used by the HHS teams to host tournaments.
In addition to the fields, the council and public has several other ideas for the complex. Some of those include a walking trail around the complex, a playground area for small children, a shaded resting area, and possibly an amphitheater to be used for large events such as concerts. The council emphasized the importance of using a design firm who is familiar with this type of project. The council views this complex as an opportunity equal to a large business moving into Haleyville because the opportunity for success is so high. The council intends to make this project a "one-time investment," meaning they want to make sure the design is competitive, equipment is durable and sufficient to meet the needs of the facility, and the complex will be something that Haleyville citizens can use frequently and be proud of.
The design firm chosen will provide an on-site review of the property, an artist rendering of the proposed project, and a proposed budget for completion. Their charge for this process is $2,350. If the council approves this step, the firm would come back to Haleyville for an additional fee to complete the bid process and to work with the city engineer to finalize the layout of the project for the construction to begin. None of the above ideas are written in stone, and more information will be available after the design firm completes the site review.