City officials are bringing on a consulting firm to help develop business strategies for the new NexusPark fieldhouse.
The Columbus Board of Works approved the agreement with Legacy Sports Group on Tuesday.
The $30,000 contract is for management consultant services for the fieldhouse’s business model, said city Director of Administration and Community Development Mary Ferdon. The agreement covers four months, spanning September through December.
Legacy describes itself as a consulting, management and event production firm from Indianapolis specializing in the sports tourism industry.
On its website, the company says it assists in management and operation of facilities and planning and producing both sporting and community engagement events.
The firm’s services to the city will include facility layout and equipment review, technology evaluation, pro forma review, developing a rate card, scheduling work, “backend build” of facility booking/management software, developing a sponsorship program, helping create a staffing model, planning a marketing and communication strategy and assisting with the creation of facility policies and procedures.
“As you know, we started demolition of the Goody’s space, so the fieldhouse will continue to move along, and the goal will be to be completed pretty much by the end of 2023,” Ferdon told board members. “… We have pro formas on the business end, but it’s not too early to start working on scheduling. Scheduling is generally at least a year and a half out for tournaments of the magnitude that we’re going to hold here. So this work needs to start now in order for us to be able to open in 2024 and start generating funding.”
The 150,000 square-foot fieldhouse will be a “sports and events venue that will host a multitude of different types of sporting and non-sporting events.”
NexusPark is a joint effort by the city of Columbus and Columbus Regional Health to redevelop the former FairOaks Mall into a health, wellness and recreation center. The two entities partnered in 2018 to purchase the mall facility and property at a 25% to 75% split, with the city retaining majority ownership for parks and recreation and sports tourism development. The Heritage Fund — The Community Foundation of Bartholomew County provided the difference between the selling price and the appraised value.
In addition to the fieldhouse, the campus is expected to include Columbus Parks administrative and recreational spaces, restaurant and retail areas and CRH facilities. Outdoor community park and gathering spaces are planned, and Dunham’s is expected to remain on-site under its current lease.