DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — The Centerville Athletic Department is launching a fundraising campaign with the goal of building a new athletic complex.

The district is planning on a building a facility that would accommodate students, coaches and community members. Department officials hosted an open house Wednesday night to kick off the fundraiser.

Prior to the pandemic, the school district was approached by a group interested in making a donation toward a baseball and softball facility. Discussions were put on hold over the past three years, but with new donors coming forward, district leadership felt like it was time to restart the conversation.

“We’re grateful for what we have, and we have been successful competitively, but having more space would be huge for our programs,” Rob Dement, Centerville’s athletic director, said. “Not only would this complex create new spaces, it also would open existing spaces for other programs to use.”

According to Dement, about $3.5 million has been pledged to the project so far. Plans call for the complex to be built in phases, unless the total amount of $9.36 million can be raised prior to groundbreaking.

Phase 1 includes a 21,414 square foot indoor turf practice facility with batting cages, four locker rooms and a meeting room, as well as restrooms that can be accessed during outdoor sporting events. This space would also be available for local youth teams to use for practice. The cost for Phase 1 is approximately $4.93 million.

Phase 2 includes an 18,758 square foot area with a weight room and wrestling practice room, along with locker rooms, restrooms and showers. With the addition of girls wrestling this school year, CHS alone has more than 80 wrestlers vying for limited space. This space would also be available for local youth wrestling teams to use for practice. The cost for Phase 2 is approximately $3.93 million.

Phase 3 includes 2,000 square feet of indoor storage space to house items such as track and field’s high jump pit equipment, which is currently being replaced more often due to being exposed to the elements under the football stadium bleachers. The cost for Phase 3 is approximately $484,000.

The project is expected to take several years. More information about the fundraising campaign can be found here.