Rocky Top Sports World

Building Area: 114,000 SF | 574,692 SF Astro Turf

Date of Completion: 2015

Type: New Construction

Location: Gatlinburg, TN

Budget: $21,500,000

Challenge: Provide expertise to help in visioning and planning process for a high-end, high-use destination venue for youth athletics for the purpose of increasing family-oriented visitations, resulting in boosting the local economy.

Solution: Design Rocky Top Sports World (RTSW), the country’s newest sports tournament destination facility. The 80-acre facility features 7 outdoor turf fields and a total of 10 hardwood basketball courts, six of which housed in a new state-of-the-art building.

Construction began with the conversion of 4 existing full-sized fields to state-of-the-art synthetic turf, continuing with the addition of 3 new synthetic turf fields, and culminating with the construction of an indoor facility with 6 courts, a full-service indoor/outdoor café, team rooms, and more.

The City of Gatlinburg and Sevier County joined together to fund the project recognizing that RTSW will attract state, regional, and national visitors for competitive tournaments in a wide number of sports, including traditional and non-traditional events. Sevier County already hosts more than 12 million visitors per year and is one of the country’s most popular vacation destinations. Local officials believe that RTSW adds a new dimension to the area’s existing appeal, resulting in more guests throughout the year.
While the City and County are funding the complex, The Sports Facilities Advisory was engaged to lead development, opening, and ongoing management. The Sports Facilities Advisory is the country’s leading resource for youth and amateur sports facilities, and their experience in successfully planning and managing complexes across the country was viewed as a key to success.

The executive of AAU recently voted this facility the sixth (6th) best indoor sports venue in the U.S.