The Pima County Board of Supervisors, at its July 6 meeting, voted 3-2 to approve the business plan and development agreement with Knott Development for new sports and entertainment venues and other commercial elements planned for the Kino Sports and Entertainment Complex.
The business plan outlines the project’s privately funded financing structure and potential income from the amenities, which include an ice sports complex, field house with indoor multi-use courts, other indoor and outdoor sports and entertainment venues, parking garage, hotels, retail and dining space, a medical office building, multi-family housing, three distinct outdoor event and community plaza areas, and new connections to the Chuck Huckelberry Loop. The public-private partnership will generate revenue for the county, reduce the county’s financial risks associated with development and operation and provide substantial regional economic development benefits.
Over the next 10 months, the development, financial and operational aspects of the project will be further refined by Knott Development during a predevelopment work phase. The expansion will make Kino one of the Southwest’s premier venues for youth, amateur and professional sports, and cultural events. In addition, the project will generate jobs through construction of the Complex and operation of new hospitality, sport, and event facilities.
“I am proud to support this measure,” said District 1 Supervisor Rex Scott. “The development of the Kino Sports and Entertainment Complex will have extraordinary effects on the quality of life in Pima County, especially for our young people. The impact on economic development will also be substantial. The well-crafted business plan carries very little risk for the county or for our taxpayers, but the rewards for our citizens and the local economy will be significant and transformative.”
Last year, the county began a process of seeking a master developer partner to complete the Kino Complex south of Interstate 10 and east of Kino Parkway. The county selected a concept proposal by Knott Development, referred to as the Kino District.
“I will be in Tucson every other week as we develop and build this project,” said Frank Knott, president of Knott Development. “While creating the development plan, we spoke with, and listened to, local community groups and incorporated their ideas to enhance the long-term impact of Kino District for the community. Going forward, we are looking forward to working with school district boards and principals to solicit the best way for their students and families to access and benefit from Kino District’s facilities and programming. In addition, we will be hosting town hall type events for public input. Our goal is to weave the Kino District development into the fabric of all aspects of the local community.”
Deputy County Administrator Carmine DeBonis Jr. also emphasized the importance of community involvement through making the plans available to the public and providing opportunities for citizens to comment.
Kino Sports and Entertainment Complex today spans more than 300 acres, has a more than 5,000 parking capacity, 22 soccer fields, 10 baseball fields, five full-service clubhouses. When the Kino District project is completed, the Kino Sports & Entertainment Complex will serve as the most expansive youth and competition sports center in the region, attracting tournaments from the Southwest, Mexico and across the nation.
Details of the proposal are available here.