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Nov. 11, 2016
Northwest Missouri State University President Dr. John Jasinski has issued the below statement regarding the result of city of Maryville voters approving a transient guest tax to advance tourism and economic development, which includes assisting with the construction and operation of a planned Northwest Multipurpose Complex on the University campus.
“Northwest Missouri State University is grateful for city support of the transient guest tax and thus the broadening of our partnership with the city of Maryville. We have enjoyed a 111-year partnership with the city, and this show of support – the single largest public-private partnership in the institution’s history – serves to strengthen the bond between town and gown. That bond has been recognized by outside groups as an exemplar, and we pledge to continue strengthening our ties within the community.
“This historic vote of support moves the Northwest Multipurpose Complex significantly forward. We have some work that remains to ensure this becomes a reality but plan on adhering to our proposed timeline of completing the architect and engineering study this fall, moving toward an RFP process in the spring and moving toward construction next summer.
“It is gratifying to have the community’s support as Northwest Missouri State University continues to partner with the city, our business community and all sectors to move the region forward. The vote of support is a clear sign of voter support of university-community partnership and providing a focus on health and wellness, athletic competitiveness, student recruitment and engagement and community-based programming.
“Thank you to our citizens for the support of our broadened partnership with the city of Maryville. This is yet another example of a region moving forward progressively – an excellent addition to the recent $140 million in community development. The $23.8 million conservative economic impact of the Northwest Multipurpose Complex – equivalent to creating 946 new jobs – will add to a vibrant and forward-looking community.”
The renderings below depict interior views of the Northwest Multipurpose Complex and its potential uses in support of University, community, business and sporting events.
For decades Northwest Missouri State University has been a leader among its peer institutions in the areas of recruitment and retention. Now, as the race to attract and keep students continues to evolve and a strong partnership with the city of Maryville works to boost economic development, Northwest is shaping plans for a facility that will meet a multitude of University and community needs.
With the support of surrounding communities and businesses, the planned Northwest Multipurpose Complex represents the single largest public-private partnership in Northwest’s 111-year history – and one of the largest public-private partnerships ever in the region. The estimated $20 million project is using multiple financing sources, including commitments from the University, private donors and community supporters.
Maryville residents showed their support of the project Nov. 8 by voting to approve a transient guest tax to advance tourism and economic development. A portion of the funding from the transient guest tax will assist with the construction and operation of the complex.
Building the facility is a strategic focus of Northwest – in its strategic plan, campus master plan and Forever Green comprehensive campaign.
“With the Northwest Multipurpose Complex, for not just the University but the community as a whole, we’re really realizing four goals – focusing on health and wellness; athletic competitiveness; recruitment, engagement and especially retention of our students; and partnerships with the city, the county and the broader community, which are very important to us,” Northwest President Dr. John Jasinski said. “It would help us realize significant goals that are aligned with our strategic plan.”
Early plans for the 137,250 square-foot facility call for recreation and exhibition space, an indoor flooring system, 100-yard practice turf, 300-meter indoor competition track, spectator seating and tiered meeting rooms.
The complex, to be located just northwest of College Park and Bearcat Stadium on the Northwest campus, is expected to be an economic driver for the region, hosting a variety of University and community activities year-round in addition to serving as a practice facility for athletics teams.
Club sports and student organizations at Northwest will actively use the facility. It may also host intercollegiate and high school track meets, community fundraisers, exhibitions, trade shows and business gatherings. With a capacity of 7,000 people, Northwest expects it will be a venue for a variety of special events such as commencement ceremonies and concerts, too.
“There are reasons communities get behind these projects,” Maryville City Manager Greg McDanel said. “There is a lot of opportunity here for additional events that would enhance community tourism and economic development.”
The facility could provide numerous social as well as recreational opportunities for Northwest students and local youth.
“The multipurpose complex is essential to the expansion and interaction possibilities for events that the Student Activities Council hosts,” said Emily Porter, graduate assistant for a Northwest organization responsible for planning and administering social, cultural and recreational activities for Northwest students. “Events such as our concert and Late Night at the Rec would benefit greatly due to the amount of students who participate. A space that is as versatile and large as the multipurpose complex would be a game changer in the types of activities we are able to provide to larger groups of students year round.”
For Bearcat athletics teams and other student organizations that regularly practice outdoors, the facility provides an additional space for the days when weather conditions are less than ideal. The Bearcat Marching Band, for example, begins to lose valuable rehearsal time when cooler, dreary November days set in over Maryville.
“Much like many of our student-athletes, the BMB struggles to rehearse in inclement weather — particularly the cold,” Director of Athletic Bands Dr. Katy Strickland said. “Once temperatures approach freezing, instruments don’t function or easily break and playing on metal mouthpieces can lead to performer injuries. The ability to use the indoor facility during times like these, along with heavy rains and severe heat, will help us continue to take the BMB to the next level so we can follow the Bearcat football team deep into the season with greater success than ever before.”
The multipurpose facility will provide a space for athletics teams that is more conducive to their needs and a competitive edge against their NCAA Division II and MIAA peers. During their offseasons, Northwest teams currently practice in the cramped lower level of the Lamkin Activity Center. The Northwest Multipurpose Complex, however, will include configurations for softball and baseball fields as well as tennis courts.
“When we have to come indoors we do not have an area where we can see live action – whether that is hitting, fielding or pitching,” Darin Loe, Northwest’s head baseball coach, said. “We can do drills and hit in the cage, but you just can’t replicate the competitive action of pitcher versus hitter.
“With the multipurpose complex, we would be able to continue with our drills and preparation as we do now. However, it would add the live component with the ability to virtually scrimmage and work on that pitcher versus hitter situation all the way up to our first outside competition in the spring.”
Northwest already has commissioned a schematic design of the facility, and an architect and engineer study is underway. Construction could begin as soon as July 2017 and take less than one year to complete.
As Northwest envisions the future of the University and the surrounding region, it is attracting philanthropic partnership through its Founding 50 Team, a group of leadership donors who have partnered with the University and are giving $50,000 or more to make the Northwest Multipurpose Complex a reality.
“We’re attracting support from all angles,” Jasinski said. “We’re having donors, friends and partners bring their monies to bear to our region and we’re very thankful for that.”
Individuals and families interested in giving to support the Northwest Multipurpose Complex are encouraged to contact Northwest Director of Athletics Mel Tjeerdsma at 660.562.1306.
Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
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Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468