CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Demolition on the former Macy’s building in downtown Charleston could begin as soon as this week in preparation for the construction of the new Capital Sports Center.

Ben Salango

Kanawha County Commissioner Ben Salango said lawyers are still working to close on the purchase of the Macy’s lot.

“Some language we’re still trying to iron out on some of the documents. If we close today, we could start demolition as soon as Wednesday,” Salango said on Monday’s “580 Live” hosted by Dave Allen on 580-WCHS.

U.S. Senator Joe Manchin’s office has provided $2 million to get the project going. The City of Charleston and Kanawha County Commission have each contributed $5 million each.

Salango said the rest of the money will come from private partnerships and a possible bond issue to pay for the rest.

“We now putting in more congressional directed spending requests. We will bond the rest or hopefully the state will come in and help because there’s a significant benefit to not just Kanawha County and not the City of Charleston but everything around it so the state will make money off this as well,” Salango said.

Different renderings of the Capital Sports Center.

Three floors of the Charleston Town Center Mall’s Parking Garage B would be demolished, and the complex will be built above it. Rodney Loftis & Sons will be completing the demolition.

ZMM Architects has been working through preliminary designs on the facility.

Salango said building the $80 million indoor sports complex will be an economic driver for the entire region just like the Shawnee Sports Complex in Dunbar.

“It’s not there for the facility itself to make money. The goal is to break even and the purpose of it is to give our community members a place to go and play, but also to generate economic impact,” he said.

The project was announced in Aug. 2022. The new center will feature an aquatic center, six basketball courts or 12 volleyball courts, six basketball courts, two wrestling mats, eight pickle ball courts, a fitness center, a turf soccer field, a running track, a swimming pool, a rock-climbing wall and a main gymnasium.

The Capital Sports Center is part of Charleston Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin’s overall revitalization plan to beautify downtown Charleston and generate tourism.