On August 10, Cambridge City Council approved plans for the new Fountain Street Soccer Complex as well as a partnership with Conestoga that will provide $1.5 million towards the project.
To be located on the east side of the Grand River at the corner of Fountain Street and Linden Drive, designs for the complex were developed after community consultation.
“We are delighted to build on our longstanding relationship with the City of Cambridge through this exciting initiative,” said Conestoga President John Tibbits. “The Fountain Street Soccer Complex will create high quality sports and recreation opportunities for athletes and youth across the community as well as for our students, while showcasing the city as a destination of choice for sports tourism.”
The outdoor complex will have seven fields that include four natural turf and three synthetic turf fields. The site will also include a 6,500 square-foot service building to accommodate public and universal washrooms, changerooms, multi-purpose space, a staff room and equipment storage.
Under the approved partnership agreement, Conestoga will provide funding for costs associated with converting one field to an artificial soccer/rugby field, upgrading team benches and bleacher seating, installing a digital scoreboard, storage area and other related amenities. The shared benefits of this agreement bring advantages for student athletes at the college while expanding the available services to the wider community.
“The city’s vision for a high performance, state-of-the-art facility aligned with our own vision and needs,” said Andrew Bates, manager, Athletics & Recreation. “The complex will greatly enhance the student-athlete experience—it will provide a home for Conestoga outdoor varsity programs where our student athletes can feel comfortable, prepared and have the means to perform at their best and with confidence. It also allows our student population to enjoy live sporting events as spectators which is an important element of campus life.”
The proposed facility will become home to the Conestoga Condors Varsity Men’s and Women’s Soccer and Rugby programs, as well as an active hub for outdoor recreation programming and events.
Bates also noted the college plans to host provincial and national tournaments at the complex, and potentially collaborate with other user groups of the space on special events, which will produce greater visibility of high performance sport at the complex and in the region.
Following council endorsement, the project moves to the design development phase which includes a Stage 2 Environmental Impact Study and the site plan application process. It is anticipated the complex will open for use in the spring of 2023.