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$12 million sports complex proposed for Hyannis
Mike Sherman, former head coach and general manager of the Green Bay Packers, has partnered with local businessman Warren Nighan to propose a $12 million world-class sports complex for Independence Park in Hyannis.
By Geoff Spillane
Posted May. 1, 2016 at 2:00 AM
Updated May 1, 2016 at 7:25 AM
HYANNIS — Mike Sherman, former head coach and general manager of the Green Bay Packers, has partnered with local businessman Warren Nighan to propose a $12 million world-class sports complex for Independence Park in Hyannis.
The facility, to be called Total Athletics Cape Cod, will feature a National Hockey League-sized ice rink, a full-sized, lighted outdoor turf field for football, baseball, lacrosse and soccer, a field house for indoor track and a smaller indoor turf field that could be used as a training facility for many sports.
The outdoor field would be covered by a bubble dome for use during the winter months, according to Sherman.
Other amenities planned for the site include a fitness center, pro shop, athletic training services, meeting room space, a rock wall, arcade and food and beverage services.
“The Cape desperately needs this facility,” said Sherman, noting that during this time of rampant opioid addiction, the region’s youth and young adults, ages 18 to 24, need a safe and healthy place to “avoid potholes and make good choices,” especially in the offseason.
“We want this to be a family-friendly, hands-on place," he said. "My sports contacts and his (Nighan’s) business acumen is a good match.”
The estimated price of the complex does not include the lease and/or purchase of an 8.6-acre parcel of land where it will be built. The property is owned by Cape Cod Aggregates and the Lorusso family, which is well known for its philanthropic activities in the region.
“I’m excited about this project. I had a vision for this property that involved a campus style environment for athletics and health and wellness,” Sam Lorusso Jr. said.
Pending town of Barnstable permitting and Cape Cod Commission approval, Sherman and Nighan are targeting a fall 2017 opening for the complex.
“We’d like to have shovels in the ground by November,” Nighan said.
The town of Barnstable Growth Management Department has been briefed on the plan.
“In terms of permitting, we haven’t received any formal application yet, but the industrial zoning allows for recreation ice rink facilities,” said Elizabeth Jenkins, principal planner for the town. “It’s a very permissive area as far as land use is concerned, and it can accommodate a broad range of uses."
Jenkins noted that the size of the project would trigger a Cape Cod Commission development of regional impact review.
As of press time, Paul Niedzwiecki, executive director of the Cape Cod Commission, had not returned a call for comment.
During an interview with the Times on Friday, Sherman and Nighan also stressed the economic benefits the complex would deliver to the region. Plans call for the facility to host sports tournaments on the youth and adult levels that will attract athletes and spectators from throughout the United States, as well as trade shows and conventions.
“We want to keep people from Cape Cod on Cape Cod, and attract others to the Cape,” said Nighan, noting there are too many athletes and too much money headed over the bridge because of lack of adequate sports facilities on the Cape.
“The idea is very intriguing,” said Wendy Northcross, executive director of the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce. “We did a study of the feasibility of introducing more sports tourism to the Cape and it said we could benefit from more facilities, such as an indoor field house and more outdoor fields. It (the complex) would increase our value proposition when attracting visitors to come here."
The project has many similarities to a sports-oriented development that had been planned for the “golden triangle” area of Sandwich, with the exception of hotels and a convention center. That plan, however, has encountered many hurdles at the town level and appears unlikely to move forward.
The planned complex is also less than three miles from the municipally owned and operated Hyannis Youth & Community Center, which has two ice rinks, a gymnasium and indoor walking track.
Barnstable Town Manager Thomas Lynch, though, believes the two operations can coexist. “We would look at ways to partner with them to increase recreational and skating opportunities, Lynch said. ”We’d be more than willing and would look forward to a meeting with the principals and our recreation staff to see where there would be opportunities for partnering. We built a community center, not a commercial enterprise.”
Sherman moved to West Dennis in 2014 after leaving his offensive coordinator position with the Miami Dolphins, and currently is the head football coach at Nauset Regional High School in Eastham. Nighan also moved to the Cape two years ago after a successful career as a senior corporate executive in the medical and pharmaceutical industries.
— Follow Geoff Spillane on Twitter: @GSpillaneCCT.
Good god I feel bad for Sherman. He may loose his shirt. If WN pulled the wool over those guys at the Bandits, imagine what he is taking this poor guy for
Say what you will about WN but having Mike Sherman on board adds a little credibility to this project. It could actually get done. The problem I see though is that Mike Sherman will probably not be involved in the day to day operation of this facility and WN will be. I can easily seeing him alienating people and running this thing in to the ground
Can certainly see a need for a turf facility. As far as another rink or program in the Cape. Not a chance. That will never survive. He will have to keep his connections with the Bandits to even get into the EHF but if he couldn't run a team in the EHF with all of his "elite" Barnstable players plus the Bridgewater and surrounding area players, there is no way he can do it in the Cape. LAX, baseball and soccer should be very happy in the Cape area with a new turf facility at the expense of his hockey venture failing.
While he's building a rink you all will be complaining about your pitiful boring lives...hahaha. whats next , Shermans an idiot. Coached Brett Farve but somehow you retards know more than him too. so awesome to read all this stuff. thanks again!!
I have to reply to some stuff from the Kings now. Ill be back to read your Whining's Later
I would suppose Mike Sherman would run the operations other than the rink and hockey. Might be a good fit for him & The Cape. So let me get this straight, a new sheet of ice is being built, money is coming in, more kids get to play and the sport is growing in the region and everyone here is upset?
Come on boys & girls, we can do better than this.
Thanks fat Todd
At least this may be a place for cape kids to play without coming off cape so many nights a week. Bandits is full of Cape folks that have no place to play competitively on that side of the bridge.
Plenty of competition in the Cape. And not sure I would use Bandits and competitive in the same sentence. How many games has have the won in the last few years?
Competitive hockey. plenty of rinks...what the cape is missing is a ****ty EHF Club program, where average players can go and pay so that they can play "elite" hockey. Hence the Bandits affiliate club program. Thsi will take off there.
There is a definite demand for this in the cape, plenty of cape kids driving to Bridgewater, Raynham and elsewhere.
Bandits is not full of Cape kids... I think there are 3 kids from Cape on bandits teams
Rink not happening. Site work began and excavator pulled up and old skull from old Wampanoag burial site.
His kid is playing 05 tier 1. He is an 06 and he is tier 1 ability but it looks better to have him up in 05 tier 1, since he can't make an 06 elite team anywhere else. He is a laughing stock in hockey. No one wanted him or his kid around and since the Bandits can't fill teams at these levels, it was his best option. He thinks his kid is too good to play in the Cape but they don't want him their either. He has burned a lot of bridges so all he can do now is build his kid a program
Guy is a nut, kid is a decent 06, but as far as not having a place to play, that 05 Tier 1 team is made up of half 06 kids after the 06 division imploded.
and his kid is probably the best 06 or 05 on that team... good luck with that.
But, hey ! It's EHF so its gotta be the best place for my 05 to play and the only reason our 05 teams went 0-80 last year was because we play the best teams in the best division in the world !!
Not sure if that was sarcasm but if it wasn't, no way his kid is best on that team. Not even the best 06 on the team and unfortunately for him, too small to play up. He should have stuck with his original plan to "fill out that waiver in his pocket" to get him on an 07 team like he planned on doing. The 06s are trashed already. The 05s were decent at one time but last years record was proof something needed to be fine there and adding 5-6 tier 1 skilled 06s to the 05 tier 1 is clearly not the answer so prepare to check off another division as trashed since the 05 elites were failing as well
A few people on here have mentioned how WN has destroyed the 06 level but the 06 team has been bad since the mite minor year. I get that the guy is intense but I have had conversations with the guy off the ice and he seems nice enough. My kid has never been coached by him so I know I'm not getting the full picture but there is so much hate on the guy. He can't be that bad
Ahhh humm, maybe you guys should bring it in a little bit here before the whole thread gets pulled. Just sayin'
People who don't know, have the right to know and this is he platform to share this information.
I hear its a go ! He has bought the Jr Hurricanes organization, and already been accepted into the E9/BHL according to some.
there are two 05 hurricane teams this year... Maybe his kid could make the lower AAA team
He tried to buy the Cape leagues out of Hyannis too ...even they wont let him in!!
Has everyone that bashes this guy been involved with him or do they gossip on the internet about him? I never hear anyone speak about him in public. I suppose most need to hide behind the safety of the computer
had the unpleasant experience of dealing with him personally. Shame on me for not listening to the advise given from a couple of people before the season started. Thought the same thing...It can't be that bad. Fool me once, shame on him, fool me twice, shame on me
Ask Yandel what he thinks of him
What the over under on the rink #1 actually gets built #2 if it is built when it will open . .
My guess 50/50 in being built and then if built..January 2020 ice ready to use
Did not buy Hurricanes or ice !! Ask the board at the rink !
Looked into it and hurricanes have not been purchased and definitely not their ice time for next season. Let's end it.
He's trying to buy the cape cod penguins. Penguins have 08,09 teams and he plans to start 07 teams.
Poti and Nichols parted ways .., they started the Penguins then had a falling out! Nicholas and WN are trying to team up. Their rink will not be ready so ...frantic to find plan B
Don't think LaCouture is allowed to coach....Nickulas wants nothing to do with Poti and I doubt he'd work with WN
I am just trying to keep up with the ever evolving world of "elite level" youth hockey and in the interest of keeping this factually correct and avoiding any hearsay :
So WN is trying to buy the Penguins to combine them with the Jr. Hurricanes that he has already bought so that they can form one organization under the Cape Cod Total Athletics monicker and play in the E9 for the next year until their own brand new facility is up and running.
DO I have that right ?
How could one guy have ruffled feathers so bad from the Cape to Boston and points south and still be in the game. This guys is a legend......Time to move north buddy
Yeah let's us all speculate, lie and make **** up. Stop will all the truth and verifying what we spew is the truth.
NOPE! Wn you haven't bought Hurricanes or their block of ice! Anyone who cares (not many do) can call the rink and find out! Have your friend Sarg print this out and tape it to your door!!