WakeMed Soccer Park

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WakeMed Soccer Park
SASSoccerPark2.jpg
Former names State Capital Soccer Park (2001–2002)
SAS Soccer Park (2002–2007)
Location Cary, North Carolina
Owner Wake County
Operator Town of Cary
Capacity 10,000
Surface Natural Grass
Tenants
Carolina Courage (WUSA) (2001–2003)
Cary Clarets (PDL) (2002–2009)
Carolina RailHawks (NASL) (2007–Present)
NC State Wolfpack (NCAA) (2002–Present)
Construction
Broke ground 2001
Opened May 2002
Construction cost $14.5 million
Architect Envirotek, Inc.

WakeMed Soccer Park is a major soccer complex located in Cary, North Carolina, United States. Originally opened in 2002 as the home of the Carolina Courage of the WUSA, WakeMed Soccer Park is now the home to the Carolina RailHawks of the North American Soccer League. The North Carolina State Wolfpack men's and women's teams of the ACC play select matches there and the complex regularly hosts major tournaments such as the NCAA College Cup, the ACC Soccer Championships, and the NCHSAA high school state soccer finals.

The soccer complex consists of a purpose-built, soccer-specific main stadium, two lighted practice fields, and four additional fields. The main stadium and the 2 lighted fields (2 & 3) are all FIFA international regulation size (120 yards x 75 yards). The main stadium seats 6,883 and is expandable to 10,000 with temporary seating. Field 2 also has 1,000 permanent bleacher seats.

The complex also sports a full-length, nationally recognized cross-country course and houses the offices of Triangle Professional Soccer.

SAS Institute, a privately held software company, has its worldwide headquarters in Cary. SAS had naming rights to the soccer park through June 30, 2007 with the option to extend their naming rights for an additional 3 years. On September 27, 2007, the Town of Cary announced that SAS had not exercised their option on the naming rights and that WakeMed Health & Hospitals had purchased the naming rights to the stadium. Effective January 1, 2008, the stadium became known as WakeMed Soccer Park. The naming rights agreement with Cary is good for 3 years and cost $300,000 per year.[1]

Construction history[edit]

East Stand Of Renovated Stadium in 2014

WakeMed Soccer Park opened in May 2002 as State Capital Soccer Park. The park is on 150 acres (0.61 km2) that the State of North Carolina has leased to Wake County. Money to build the soccer park came from $14.5 million in county-wide hotel room and prepared food and beverage taxes. The Town of Cary assumed responsibility for operations and maintenance in 2004 from Capital Area Soccer League. On January 26, 2006, the Town of Cary council amended its lease to allow it to sublet the property to Triangle Professional Soccer through the year 2011 for the exclusive promotion of professional soccer and lacrosse events at the complex.

2011 Expansion[edit]

In November 2011, the Town of Cary kicked off a $6.3 million expansion project. The finished expansion added 3,000 permanent seats to the 7,000-seat stadium, 1,500 of the seats going to the north end zone and the other 1,500 to upper-level stands on the east side of the stadium. Also added on the east side were a new three-story building to provide restrooms, concessions, and access to the additional seating from the third floor. Team locker rooms were relocated to the ground level of the new structure to allow players direct access to the stadium from midfield and direct access from their team bus to the locker rooms.[2]

Notable events[edit]

Cross Country Events[edit]

The grounds also host multiple high school cross country races. Including dual meets, high school conference championships, Mid-East Region Championship, and the Nike Team Southeast National Regional meets. The course starts and ends behind the practice fields and runs along the perimeter of the grounds. It is known to give personal bests even with a difficult hill which must be run twice. The course record for the 5k distance is 14:57.6 by Daniel Moore at the 2011 Great American Cross Country Festival. In recent years it has held the Atlantic Coast Conference's conference championship.

This is the course map: http://www.carolinaday.com/meets/2008/2008-nxn-reg-se-course-map.jpg

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 35°47′10.19″N 78°45′18.38″W / 35.7861639°N 78.7551056°W / 35.7861639; -78.7551056

Events and tenants
Preceded by
Home Depot Center
Hermann Stadium
Pizza Hut Park
PPL Park
Host of the College Cup
2005
2007
2009
2014
Succeeded by
Hermann Stadium
Pizza Hut Park
Harder Stadium
Sporting Park