Dorman soccer complex moves forward

Plans for a six-field soccer complex on 47 acres off Dorman Road will finally come to fruition this year, as leaders at Charlotte Soccer Academy  now have all the needed environmental tests, studies and fixes in place to move the project forward.

The Charlotte Soccer Academy OrthoCarolina Sportsplex will see phase I open this fall off Dorman Road in Pineville.

The Charlotte Soccer Academy OrthoCarolina Sportsplex will see phase I open this fall off Dorman Road in Pineville.

Plans for the complex were approved by the Pineville Town Council several years back, but Charlotte Soccer Academy, now owner of what had become an illegal dumping site along Dorman Road, had to delay construction because of environmental issues and a small trace of water contamination, Brad Wylde, executive director of Charlotte Soccer Academy, said. Now, with logistics out of the way, and majority of needed building permits secured, the nonprofit is ready to move forward on its long-awaited plan to call Pineville home.

“What we’ve been missing is a place to call our home,” Wylde said. “We’ve already started to do some surface cleanup. The goal is to start moving some dirt over the next few weeks.”

Nonprofit Charlotte Soccer Academy is one of two soccer clubs in North and South Carolina to offer all levels of soccer within the United States Youth Soccer structure. The club serves more than 4,500 athletes.

The new Pineville facility, called OrthoCarolina Sportsplex as OrthoCarolina is one of the organization’s largest sponsors, will serve as the club’s headquarters. The project will come in two phases, with phase I to be completed by this fall. That phase would include the development of the complex’s five synthetic turf fields and one Bermuda grass field. Phase II, which Wylde hopes to be completed sometime next spring, would include a 20,000-square-foot building which will house Charlotte Soccer Academy’s offices, pro shop, concessions, locker rooms and showers and a gym with a sports/physical therapy center from the nonprofit’s partner, Architect Sports and Physical Therapy. The organization also is in talks with Novant Health to add a potential urgent care facility at the site.

Town leaders are excited to see the project finally get off the ground. Initially, the project was appealing to town leaders since it would help clean up a deserted illegal dumping site that sat in the middle of a developing, mostly residential, Dorman Road. Traffic was a concern for leaders, and residents of nearby neighborhoods, like senior living community The Cottages. But concerns were eased, town leaders said, after developers vowed to widen and add a large stacking lane on Dorman, and lay out their facility with an extensive driveway on site to help alleviate any back-ups on the road. Cleaning up the over-grown dumping site also would add value to nearby residences.

“… we want the town of Pineville to know we want to be very good neighbors,” Wylde said. “We want the town to utilize the facility and benefit from us coming to town. We want to ensure local neighbors will be comfortable.”

The complex has the potential to bring other retailers to the area who could benefit from out-of-town teams spending nights in Pineville hotels, eating at Pineville restaurants and shopping at Pineville retailers, town leaders said in an email.

“The town is very excited about the facility being built on Dorman Road,” the email said. “…we believe this not only will be an economic boost to the community, but also a boost to the available facilities and resources our citizens will have access to… The town also is excited to see a brownfield site once used as an illegal dumping ground be transformed into what will be a great community asset.”

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