El Paso, TX (KDBC) — Another strike against the Sportspark Complex in Far East El Paso. Construction has been halted for about a month -- and there's no signs it'll start up again anytime soon. The $7.5 facility was supposed to be completed last summer but now the county is looking for someone to finish the job after firing the original contractor.
Less than half of the ten fields at the new Sportpark Complex in Far East El Paso are ready for play and it looks like it'll stay this way for some time. "Right now there's nobody out there working,” Ernesto Carrizal, the Public Works Director for the county said.
County officials are tight lipped about the project because of pending litigation. But they did tell us they are working with a bonding company to select a new contractor to finish the project and get construction going again. A feat softball and baseball players like don brooks can stand behind. "We were scheduled to play at the sports park but we ran into a bit of a problem,” Don Brooks, Tournament Director Chili Pepper Classic told us over the phone.
The Chili Pepper Classic, a softball tournament for senior citizens was held at the complex in April. "The Sportspark wasn't totally completed yet,” Brooks explained, "They offered us the to play at Ascarate park which we took advantage of it because we needed fields to play on."
Because the complex is not completely finished, Books said they were unable to secure the number of teams they were hoping for. "We had kind of been pumping it up in the hopes that we would draw more teams,” Brooks recalled.
Over the past year, we've heard from the contractor, Sunlight Enterprises and the architect -- Parkhill, Smith and Cooper. Both groups have been pointing the finger at each other as to why the park hasn't been completed. "So I can tell you this, the county is less than satisfied with the product so far in so far as those repairs,” County Commissioner Carlos Leon, of Precinct 1 told us in March of 2014.
Despite the hiccup, the Chili Pepper Tournament will return to the Sportspark Complex for the next two years.
County officials are limited on what they can say about the complex but as soon as they tell us when construction will begin again here, we'll let you know.
Among several fields -- new batting cages, a clubhouse, administrative offices, t-ball concessions, and family restrooms all still need to be built. That work's expected to take about two months to finish once a new contractor is hired.