Reprinted with permission from The Republic newspaper, May 13, 2023

Contractors are nearing completion on the initial framework of Columbus’ new fieldhouse.

Force Construction project manager Brett Siepka said workers are past the halfway mark on putting together subassemblies for the fieldhouse and expect to be done with this phase by the beginning or middle of next week. The hope is to finish by May 16 or earlier.

“It’s just all going to be dependent on weather,” he said. “Weather was a factor today, and it looks like it could be a factor later in this week as well. So it’s all kind of hinging on Mother Nature.”

The 150,000-square-foot Circle K Fieldhouse is intended to be “a sports and events venue that will host a multitude of different types of sporting and non-sporting events,” including local, regional and state sports tournaments, as well as potentially hosting trade shows, conferences, graduations and large-scale community events, according to NexusPark officials.

Once the subassembly work is complete, the plan is to begin installing roof panels on the week of May 22, with this work continuing for about 30 or 40 days.

Siepka said in a previous interview that after the panels are done, next steps will include installing precast around the exterior of the building and insulated metal wall panels. Force will then work to “detail out” the inside of the building.

“Assembly has gone up real great,” he said. “We’re actually on schedule to complete in the allotted time that we originally planned for, so we are very happy with the way things have gone thus far.”

Force is on track to complete the construction of the fieldhouse in the fourth quarter of 2023, he said.

NexusPark is a joint effort between the city of Columbus and Columbus Regional Health to transform the former FairOaks Mall into a health, wellness and recreation center. The campus is also expected to include parks department and community spaces, restaurant and retail areas and CRH facilities.

Outdoor community park and gathering spaces are planned, and Dunham’s is expected to remain on-site under its current lease.