Sunday, August 1, 2021

Cedar Fair Exploring the Development of a $28 Million ESports Arena in Sandusky

© Cedar Fair
Cedar Fair has announced that they are "exploring" the development of a $28 million esports arena to be built within the existing Cedar Point Sports Center, which is located just minutes from Cedar Point amusement park.  The company has submitted preliminary plans for the project to the Sandusky Planning Commission, and is partnering with Esports Development Co, LLC on the expansion.  The outside of the esports arena building can be seen above, which has been designed by OSPORTS, a division of Osborn Engineering Company - the same firm that designed the Cedar Point Sports Center.

© Cedar Fair
Calling the facility a "beacon for Midwest youth and collegiate gaming and esports," the structure will house a "best-in-class space to host competitive events for up to 1,500 stadium spectators."  It will also include 200 gaming stations and offer a variety of food and beverage options.  The project's partner, Esports Development Co. LLC, is described as having "significant experience and connections in the gaming world" and they will work with the "'best of breed' Tier 1 gaming companies to provide a world-class experience for guests and gamers alike."

The facility will also be able to host other events in the arena, such as concerts, youth camps and educational opportunities.  The first floor will have the arena, 200 gaming station hub, locker rooms and a food court.  The second floor will have a restaurant with an outdoor terrace, a broadcast studio and office space.  The third and fourth floors will feature dormitories for esports camp and event attendees.

© Cedar Fair

Sports Force Park at Cedar Point © Bing Maps

The esports development will be attached to the Cedar Point Sports Center, the latest addition to the $50 million sports park seen above.  The building will attach to the existing 145,000 square foot structure which is already used for indoor tournaments and features a medical facility.  The structure is located adjacent to the Sports Force Park which features 10 multi-purpose outdoor fields.

Cedar Fair says that if the project is approved through the city and financing is obtained construction can start this year with an opening in the first half of 2023.

The entire sports park development has been a great feeder for guests both staying in the company's hotels but also for Cedar Point.  If you take a trip to the park during the summer and stay on site you can pick up on this quickly.  Cedar Fair notes that competitive gaming is a global $1.1 billion industry, with double digit growth each year.  They also want to continue to diversify and provide an "immersive entertainment experience that differentiates our parks and makes our park guests want to come back again and again."  To that end it seems that this could be a winning idea and another layer of growth for the company's Sandusky operations.