The Hoover Metropolitan Complex hosted a celebration Saturday as they cut the ribbon on five new ball fields for the outdoor baseball complex.

“We’ve been waiting on this for a couple of years now, and we’ve opened up the baseball fields. We have five baseball fields out here that can be converted into football or soccer,” said Hoover Mayor Frank Brocato.

The expansion includes a grass field and four turf fields that were built to regulation size to allow NCAA play.

“It just opens up more avenue and flexibility that we can have with the community and bringing things to Hoover,” said General Manager John Sparks.

Sparks has only been the general manager for one week, but he already has big plans.

“We’re looking for tournaments. We’re looking for regionals. We’re looking to make this a destination. It’s already a sports Mecca in this area of the country,” Sparks said.

“You’ll see people from all across the United States coming to this facility. And that sells Hoover and it also sells the Birmingham Hoover metropolitan area,” said Brocato.

The three-phase project, including tennis, soccer and football facilities that are currently under construction is an $80M project. Mayor Brocato says it’s a great investment for the city.

“In terms of economic impact all of the studies that you read and all of the information that you gather from travel bureaus talks about the impact of Youth Sports, the positive impact it is having on communities like Hoover. So we consider ourselves really to be a major player in that Arena,” said Brocato.

The new fields will be used for the first time Monday and are slated to host a tournament at the end of August.