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Large Washington Soccer Complex on Hold

City, Soccer Association at Odds Over Site

June 3, 2009

Plans for a large soccer complex in Yakima, Washington are on hold, according to the Yakima Herald-Republic.

The $3 million facility intended to attract players from across the country calls for 35-acre complex featuring a dozen soccer fields, concessions and other facilities, but there is uncertainty over the city-owned site next to Interstate 82, the paper reported.

"This is a pretty big setback. We thought we had a site," Dan Gaulke, president of the Yakima Youth Soccer Association, told the Herald-Republic.

The association estimates that the facility would contribute $2 million annually to the local economy.

The city claims it needs the land and a proposed project to move a levee on the nearby Yakima River would pose problems, according to the Herald-Republic.

"It's not like we're saying 'No. Get out,"' Yakima wastewater manager Scott Schafer told the paper. "It's just something we have to take care of, and it's not going to work out to have a (soccer) facility out there.

"It's a great project," he added. "It just needs to be relocated to another area."

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