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Local sporting groups start planning a place to play

The presidents of the Niskayuna soccer and lacrosse clubs are asking for the town's support as they begin plans to construct an indoor sports facility. It's a project that came about with the fall closing of Center City in downtown Schenectady, where the clubs used to practice in the colder months.

They were looking for a non-binding resolution from the board, said Niskayuna Supervisor Joe Landry of the clubs' proposal. "It would give them a sense of where the board is on their project."

The soccer and lacrosse clubs have been unable to practice this season due to a lack of space.

At the Thursday, March 5, meeting of the parks, education and recreation committee, Michael Parzych, president of the Niskayuna Soccer Club, and Steve Avveduti, president of the Niskayuna Lacrosse Club, presented their preliminary plans for the privately funded facility.

"I think if things continue to move forward quickly with the town, and the financing lines up, the chances are high that it will be up for the fall," said Parzych.

The facility would cost between $500,000 and $600,000. After a capital drive and donations, the clubs are anticipating a bond or loan of $400,000.

According to preliminary plans, the building, which would be created in the style of a warehouse, would measure around 100-by-200-feet with a "clear span space." Heaviest use of the building is expected from November to March. According to Parzych and Avveduti, the times the space would be in use would be between 4 and 10 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekends. According to the preliminary plan, a loaded cost of $100 per hour for usage is anticipated.

"This is something that's just starting to be discussed," said Landry. "There are other clubs from other areas that may have an interest in this. The Center City facility was used by clubs other than the Niskayuna clubs. People came from as far away as Guilderland and Clifton Park to take advantage of the club's facilities."

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