Muscle Shoals announces $65 million sports complex, retail and entertainment complex

By William Thornton

Muscle Shoals officials announced a $65 million project to build a sports complex, entertainment and retail center Monday, May13, 2024. (City of Muscle Shoals)

Muscle Shoals today announced it will fund a $65 million sports and entertainment complex with an amphitheater to adjoin a retail development on the city’s southwest corner.

Mayor Mike Lockhart made the announcement Monday morning, saying the project “promises to revolutionize the landscape of local sports, recreation and the cultural scene.”

City officials began talking about the project more than two years ago, meant to provide a sports, music and entertainment tourism site.

The complex will be located on 66 acres at Sportsplex Drive near U.S. 72 and U.S. 43, on the current site of city-owned ball fields.

Lockhart said the development will include youth baseball and softball fields, tennis and pickleball courts, soccer fields, basketball and volleyball courts. The amphitheater will seat 1,000.

An event center will have space for six basketball courts, 12 volleyball courts, and can accommodate trade shows and conference.

A privately funded retail area will also feature restaurants and lodging, he said.

The city plans to invest in the sports facility through bonds, paid for through taxes from the adjoining private retail development. “This will not have an impact on current general budget,” he said.

“Whether you’re a seasoned athlete, a music aficionado, or simply looking for a vibrant space to connect with others, this development will offer something truly special for everyone,” Lockhart said.