Saturday, April 27, 2013

More on Gaelic Sports

An anonymous 'tip' hit my email box, saying that the World Sports Park, aka cricket park, aka Gaelic sports park, was in fact presented to the Parks committee on August 23 last year.  The sender shared a link to the minutes of that meeting, directing me to page 23 of that pdf.

This was the budget hearing for the Parks Department, and the PowerPoint presentation of Parks Director, John Williams.  The presentation did indeed list the World Sports Park as a "2012 Accomplishment".  I went over to WTCY and located the video from that hearing and have embedded the full 24 seconds related to this park:

The email also sent me to one of the Mayor's Initiatives pages on the Indy.Gov site, dedicated to this park on the site of the current Post Road Community Park.  The plan shown there is different, even in shape, much less field types, from Williams' slide.  The Indy Parks website shows a map of the Post Road Park, which is the same rectangular shape was included in the budget presentation.  I was unable to find any World Sports Park in the list on the Indy Parks website.
Back to the Mayor's initiatives page - there is contained on that page a link to a World Sports Park 'brochure', which turns out to be a bigger version of the map shown on the main page.  Right clicking I was able to get the creation date of that document - 4/16/2013 3:08:33 PM.  My, but, that is the same date as the Mayor's Indian announcement of the project.  What a coincidence.
IBJ reporter Anthony Schoettle reports:
Mayor Greg Ballard revealed Tuesday during a trade mission to India that Indianapolis hopes to host the inaugural United States Cricketing Championship next summer or fall.

It was the first public announcement of the city's plans, and suddenly shed light on a $6 million project to create a complex that would host the event on the city's far east side.

Already, Ballard has enlisted the Indiana Sports Corp. and Visit Indy, the city’s tourism arm, to help attract, promote and conduct the cricket event, according to Marc Lotter, a spokesman for the mayor. The event will be sanctioned by the United States of America Cricket Association.

Lotter told IBJ the effort to host the event is part of the initiative to transform a 40-acre city park in the 1300 block of South Post Road into an international sports complex capable of hosting local, regional, national and international cricket, rugby, lacrosse and hurling events.

One multi-use field already is complete at the Post Road Community Park and is being used by the city’s local cricket club, Lotter said. The park will be renamed Indianapolis World Sports Park.

The $6 million project began two years ago. Lotter said that once it is complete in summer or fall of 2014, the park will have five athletic fields and be capable of holding events attracting as many as 10,000 spectators.

10,000 spectators.  Here is the aerial of the park property at 1300 S. Post Road, captured as a screen shot from MapIndy.  This aerial was taken in the spring of 2012, and you'll note the cricket playing field was not yet installed.
I wonder what the neighborhood thinks about this?  Evidently, at least one neighbor heard the same day the rest of us did, as they texted Councillor Brown during the April 18 Public Works committee meeting while this project was being discussed.  DPW personnel, including Director Lori Miser, could not say how much outreach the Parks Department had done in the area.
Well, I've rambled on.  This project may have been know by certain insiders, but it was kept very low on the radar.  Way too low for some Councillors, and way too low for the public who will foot the bill for at least $5.8 million.


guy77money said...

I suspect that the insiders that really run the mayors office have decided to occasionally throw Ballard a bone, so they can keep giving out taxpayer money for all the downtown projects that banks find to risky to finance. Ballard is far from the sharpest tool in the shed.

Anonymous said...

The Daily Show did a full segment last night on Cricket - maybe we're ahead of the curve?

Had Enough Indy? said...

Well, Anon - not so much as a full segment. There was a full segment with Jon Hamm from Mad Men. Among other things, he mentioned he is shooting a movie about two Indian cricket players recruited to play baseball (which is an actually popular sport in this country). That took 20 seconds and they moved on to baseball.

Amee said...

This is cool!