Caps’ Ovechkin helps break ground on massive Northern Va. sports complex

SPRINGFIELD, Va. — A massive sports and entertainment complex is set to open in Northern Virginia in September 2018.

The 20-acre St. James campus, at the intersection of the Beltway and I-395 in Springfield, will include an indoor FIFA regulation-sized soccer turf field, two NHL regulation-sized ice rinks and an Olympic-sized competition pool, along with basketball and volleyball courts, batting cages, squash courts and golf simulators.

Other features of the complex include a health club, climbing wall, indoor water park and restaurant.

The facility, which will be among the largest of its kind in the country, is being built on a site formerly owned by Washington Gas.

The for-profit project already has a celebrity endorser: Washington Capitals star Alex Ovechkin, who said at Thursday’s groundbreaking that he was especially excited about the two ice rinks being built. “It’s going to be huge for kids who want to be involved on the ice,” he said. “I wish I had those kinds of facilities when I was a kid.”

Project co-founder and co-CEO Craig Dixon says memberships will be available, or customers can purchase “a la carte experiences.”

His counterpart, Kendrick Ashton, says this is their first development, but that they expect to build more around the country. “There’s an enormous demand for high-quality sports venues and high-quality sports programming under one roof,” he says. He adds that Washington’s “extraordinary” sports participation rate and density make it an ideal place for the facility.

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