Thunder Bay

Soccer Northwest frustrated at lack of indoor soccer space

The president of Soccer Northwest says he's frustrated that the city's indoor soccer players are likely faced with another winter with little space to play.
The president of Soccer Northwest said his organization planned ahead and booked indoor soccer space wherever it could be found in case the Goal Sports Centre II didn't open in time for the upcoming indoor soccer season.

The president of Soccer Northwest says he's frustrated that the city's indoor soccer players are likely faced with another winter with little space to play.

Michael Veneziale said his organization was one of the city soccer groups that signed a letter of intent to book space in the Goal Sports Centre II, a private facility that developers had intended to build on Golf Links Road in time for the next indoor soccer season.

However, the facility has been stalled due to a zoning issue, and the city says it's unlikely to be resolved in time for the centre to be built and opened by January.

"We anticipated the facility not being ready at the timeline that was originally stated, simply because it was just too quick," Veneziale said. "We've planned ahead."

He said the Thunder Bay men's indoor soccer league and Thunder Bay Chill have booked up as much time as they can in the Lakehead University Hangar and school gymnasiums, which are really the only places to play indoor soccer in Thunder Bay at the moment.

Veneziale said there's less space available this year for indoor soccer this year compared to last, since the Confederation College bubble has closed.

"We've learned from the past to always have plan A, B, C, and D ready, because something always seems to come up," he said.

The city is continuing work on its own indoor turf sports facility, which will be built at Chapples Park. However, under the current schedule, it won't be open until fall 2021.