An anticipated opening for the Florida Hospital Center Ice complex will be delayed until spring 2016, largely due to a slower than expected wait on permitting.
Gordie Zimmermann, a partner in Z Mitch, said he expects construction to resume in the next weeks, with a scheduled completion in the first quarter of 2016.
“We’re in good shape,” Zimmermann said.
Initially, the opening for the sports complex, at 3173 Cypress Ridge Blvd., had been announced for the fall, potentially at the same time as the Tampa Premium Outlets. The outlet mall will open on Oct. 29.
Both facilities are off State Road 56 at the Interstate 75 interchange.
A groundbreaking for the sports complex took place in March. The pre-construction work including underground utilities has been completed. But, the site has been inactive for several months.
The rainy season caused some delay, but Zimmermann said much of the slow down was due to mechanical and structural challenges from the refrigeration system for the ice rinks and the air conditioning.
“All that had to be organized properly so it fits,” he said. “It’s complicated.”
Florida Hospital, which purchased naming rights for the complex, is partnering with Z Mitch on the project. The facility’s name – Florida Hospital Center Ice – was announced in May.
Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel will offer sports performance and injury prevention programs, along with orthopedic and outpatient rehabilitation services.
There will be four full-size ice rinks, and a mini-rink for ice hockey and figure skating. But the facility will be multipurpose for basketball and other sports, including soccer and lacrosse. Curling also is an anticipated sport.
A sports-themed family-style restaurant will be opened. Non-sports activities, such as dog shows and graduation ceremonies, are likely as well.
The sports complex is expected to be a venue that will host regional and even international youth hockey leagues, and global hockey tournaments.
Zimmermann said a hockey day at the site might be held by the end of the year. And, he said figure skating registration could take place in February.
Along with the permitting, Zimmermann said, “We’re moving ahead in proper sequence.”
Published September 16, 2015