Waterloo city officials marked the opening of the new Cedar Valley SportsPlex with a grand-opening ceremony that was attended by hundreds of people Friday afternoon. The $27-million dollar downtown facility opens to the public at 8 a.m. Saturday morning (January 18, 2014).

The Greater Cedar Valley Alliance and Chamber joined Waterloo Mayor Buck Clark, Waterloo Economic Development President Dan Watters and Director of Waterloo Leisure Services Paul Huting for the ribbon-cutting.

“This is an incredible thing for the Waterloo, Cedar Falls and the Cedar Valley,” Mayor Clark said. “To be able to walk in, walk around, and look at this facility and think that this belongs to the people of the Cedar Valley gives me a great feeling. It’s something that everyone should be absolutely, incredibly proud of”.

The facility’s construction and opening is the result of nearly 15 years of planning and fund-raising, which began after Waterloo voters rejected a financing referendum in 2002. The project broke ground in 2012.

The state-of-the-art facility features a full-size gymnasium, a turfed field, a running track, an indoor playground, a pool with a slide, a golf simulator, child care, specialized classes, personal trainers, locker rooms, and rooms for parties and meetings

The project is the cornerstone of an on-going major redevelopment of downtown Waterloo, a project that also includes two other already completed projects – the Riverloop Expo Plaza and the Amphitheater Theater along the Cedar River.

Photo: Elwin Huffman

The WDC’s goals for the SportsPlex are to improve the health and wellness of area citizens and energize economic development as a cornerstone of the city’s Riverfront Renaissance Plan.

“The Cedar Valley has never had an all-encompassing facility like this,” Clark said. “It will give people of all ages and abilities the chance to become healthier, happier citizens.”

Story By: Elwin Huffman