“We’re Ready to See Some Dirt” – McCracken County Outdoor Sports Complex Design Can Move Forward |

MCCRACKEN COUNTY, KY – McCracken County’s outdoor sports complex projects are moving forward after the governments of Paducah and McCracken County and the McCracken County Sports Tourism Commission signed a memorandum of understanding to officially fund the project.

There is no official date yet as to when they will launch, but doing so is a step in that direction. The signing of the agreement will allow the commission to work on a final agreement with PFGW Architects to produce the final designs for the complex.

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The Sports Tourism Commission voted unanimously to approve the memorandum of understanding at its meeting Wednesday afternoon at the convention center. STC President Jim Dudley is ready to take the project further.

“We’re ready to see some broken ground like everyone else, but we’re getting there as fast as we can,” Dudley said.

Once the final designs are complete, they will be able to determine the cost to build the facility. The designs that have been released anticipate a total cost of $43 million.

“As we know, during COVID the construction costs have really increased, so we can kind of finalize what it looks like,” Dudley said. “Some of those costs are going to go up, down and really see that number.”

They can’t innovate at Bluegrass Downs until those final designs are complete. Dudley said their next step is to talk to three companies interested in managing the facility.

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“What these companies are going to do is make sure we’re ready to go on day one,” Dudley said. “And they’re going to walk us through design, build and then implement. Because you want to have a business in place, you know, they recommend 18 months before opening.”

The city, the department and the sports tourism commission will also have to sign an intermunicipal agreement for the complex. It’s a bit different than a memorandum of understanding and would set out a plan to cover shortfalls, manage revenue surpluses, who would foot the bill for maintenance costs, things like that. Dudley said their goal is to get the inter-local agreement signed early next year.

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