Dorchester County and Summerville YMCA partner to develop state-of-the-art sports complex in Oakbrook area

February 28, 2024

Dorchester County and Summerville YMCA proudly announce a groundbreaking partnership that will enhance recreational opportunities for the community. With an investment of over $12 million from Dorchester County and a contribution of 17 acres from the YMCA, a new cutting-edge sports complex will be built at the current location of the Oakbrook YMCA.

This initiative signifies a milestone in the broader goal of the redevelopment of the Oakbrook area in Summerville. Leveraging a portion of Dorchester County’s Tax Increment Financing (TIF), the project will support the long-range plan to revitalize this community by providing state-of-the-art amenities for residents and visitors. TIF is a tool that allows governments to use the incremental increase in assessed value and property taxes to fund infrastructure improvements in a designated blighted area without a tax increase. A portion of these funds totaling $10,350,000 has been allocated towards the sports complex project. Due to a cost project increase last year, the Legislative Delegation designated an additional $2 million towards the overall budget for a total project budget of $12,350,000.

“Revitalizing the Oakbrook region with upgraded transportation and utility infrastructure, enhanced lighting, a modern streetscape, and improved environmental, cultural, recreational, and educational services are priorities of the Oakbrook Redevelopment Plan,” says Chairman Todd Friddle, Dorchester County Council. “The Oakbrook Sports Complex aligns with our motto “Do More Dorchester” and will offer a number of recreational activities and opportunities to the community.”

The new sports complex will include state-of-the-art turf sports fields and courts, multipurpose spaces, a concession building with restrooms, a playground, and access to the Sawmill Branch Trail System. Under the Summerville YMCA’s leadership, the sports complex will also offer year-round programs and activities designed to cater to the diverse interests and needs of our community.

“I want to thank Dorchester County Council for their visionary thinking and commitment to make this facility a reality,” said Joe Debney, CEO of the Summerville Family YMCA. “The Summerville YMCA’s mission is to be a community cornerstone that puts Christian principles into practice through programs that build a healthy spirit, body, and mind for all. These new facilities will help us reach an entirely new portion of our community while protecting the existing youth and adult sports programs that so many of our friends and neighbors currently enjoy.”

“The project has been a long time coming. In an area that so many of us have spent time in with our families over the years, I’m excited to see modern-day recreational opportunities that our families deserve coming to Summerville,” said Councilman Jay Byars, Dorchester County Council. “We want to thank the Y for being a partner in making this project a reality, and I look forward to seeing everyone enjoy this facility for decades to come.”

Anticipated construction will begin late summer and designed in phases to ensure that there is as little disruption as possible to the ongoing recreational activities currently taking place at the facility. A groundbreaking ceremony will be held later this year.