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5 News gives an inside look at Bridgeport’s multi-million dollar sports complex, The Bridge

Published: Mar. 5, 2021 at 9:23 PM EST
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BRIDGEPORT, W.Va (WDTV) - Sitting at the top of a hill, across the street from the Bridgeport Sports Complex, is a massive, modern looking building. Lacking any signage on the building itself, the concrete walls extend far from the glass entrance at the very center. This building, Bridgeport city staff hope, will become a hub for Harrison County families.

“This is one of those facilities that comes around once in a generation or two,” said Randy Wetmore, Bridgeport City Manager.

The facility will offer a wide range of activities for athletes, families and people wanting to stay active.

  • Warm-up and 25-meter competitive swimming pool with spectator stands
  • Concession stand and picnic area
  • Hardwood gym hosting six basketball or volleyball courts
  • Indoor Turf Field hosting football, soccer and batting cages
  • Fitness Center
  • A 1/4-mile indoor elevated track
  • Indoor climbing area featuring 31 unique walls
  • Two party rooms

While the skeleton of this sports utopia gives hint at the scale of activities, currently the protective paper and the construction equipment hide what the final product will look like. But the contractors are not expected to be there much longer.

“We are about 75-80% complete now and we expect to be open sometime around the first part of May/mid-May,” said Joe Shuttleworth, Director of Bridgeport Parks and Recreation.

This timeline is 45 days later than expected and will be considered by the Bridgeport City Council on Monday. Along with this agenda item, Councilmembers will also consider the membership rates for the facility.

City officials used the money from a 1% sales tax to pay for construction of the facility and will use membership rates for the upkeep. Shuttleworth says they will announce the membership rates formally as early as next week but hinted that early bird rates would be available for those who sign up early.

The hope is that this facility will be a cornerstone of life in Bridgeport. Shuttleworth says that the health benefit for residents and the tourism benefit for the city will make this a facility that will be integral to the success of Bridgeport for decades.

“It is that kind of facility that not only attract local people. But those tournaments and everything that will be coming soon,” Wetmore said.

For more information on The Bridge and to see a virtual tour visit https://thebridgewv.com/

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