National Training Center planning for indoor arena
September 12, 2011, 11:22 pm
This past Saturday marked the 10th anniversary of the opening of Lake County’s National Training Center. There’s no doubt the facility, on the campus of South Lake Hospital in Clermont, is a “huge economic driver” for the area, said Dot Richardson, two-time Olympic gold medalist in softball and an orthopaedic surgeon who serves as the NTC director. Just from the center’s annual spring games, it brings an estimated $8.3 million in economic impact to the community. The annual estimate is $18 million to $20 million in economic impact.
When Richardson was asked what was in the plans for the next 10 years there was no shortage of answers. (After all, the NTC is on about 180 acres, a good portion of which isn’t developed.) The next big thing would be an indoor field house, like an arena, with six to eight basketball courts and 12 to 16 volleyball courts. The hurdle, of course, is funding.“These are the dreams,” Richardson said. “In reality, we have the property where we could do that. It’s a matter of if there is funding. You gotta find the funding and the partnerships.”