(Miami-Dade County, FL) -- On Saturday morning, April 9, 2011, Miami-Dade Commissioner Dennis C. Moss, Miami-Dade Park and Recreation Director Jack Kardys and staff and hundreds of invited residents and supporters gathered at Southridge Park located at 19598 SW 112th Avenue in South Miami-Dade for the Grand Opening ceremony and field day at the new community stadium facility. The event showcased the upgrades of Southridge Park in District 9. The informal ceremony included a series of youth relay races including "The Commissioner Moss 100 Yard Relay".
MDPR Director Jack Kardys kicked off the event with a brief overview of the new park stadium project which consists of a 5,232 square-foot field building with ticket counters, a concession area and restrooms; bleacher seating for 1,512 sports fans; a lighted parking area with connecting walkways; and a perimeter fence. Additionally, a new electronic scoreboard with video display and a public address system were all major features of the improvements completed in conjunction with the second phase of development of the community stadium project.
The16.1-acre community park with a lighted baseball field; a lighted football/soccer field, a running track; and a similar field building and bleachers on the west side of the complex were all a result of the first phase of the Southridge Park development. Future plans for the park include a family aquatics facility to be installed on the park's east side, just south of the new parking lot. The total cost for Phase II of the project was $3,632,000 and was made possible with funds from the Building Better Communities Bond Program (GOB), Safe Neighborhood Parks Bond Program (SNP), the Quality Neighborhood Improvement Program (QNIP) and Park Impact Fees.
Southridge's Park Stadium project in District 9 is one of several projects included in The Moss Plan. The Moss Plan, originally referred to as "South Dade Neighborhood Development Concept Plans", was renamed by a unanimous vote by the Commission, hence "The Moss Plan". Many projects benefiting from The Moss Plan include business expansion and development, street paving and road improvements, affordable housing, community centers/recreation facilities, community gateway signs, redevelopment and expansion of parks, beautification projects, crime prevention, and homebuyer's counseling.
Commissioner Moss thanked and acknowledged the many partners and supporters that made the Southridge Park and New Park Stadium project possible, including the Miami-Dade Parks and Recreation Director and Staff, the Principal of Miami Southridge Senior High, Dr. David K. Moore and Athletic Director, Harvey Clayton. He expressed a special word of gratitude to former Miami Southridge Track Coach Sam Burley who was instrumental in seeing the project reach its full potential.
Prior to the ceremony ending, Commissioner Moss stated, "This facility was a promise we made to the community back in 1993 through The Moss Plan and today we are realizing a part of that promise. Today we are proud and pleased to have a complete stadium where we can enjoy the fine football games and teams in this community." Commissioner Moss went on to say, "The New Stadium Park came out of a design to put a public stadium in this region because the only local stadiums available were the ones located at Harris Field in Homestead or at Tropical Park…nothing in between the two. Therefore, at the request of the community, through The Moss Plan, we wanted to make sure there was a stadium in this region that would serve the schools, the children and the community in this area."