Salango welcomes public comments on Capital Sports Center

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Kanawha County Commissioner Ben Salango wants public input on the Capital Sports Center as county and Charleston officials prepare for a second listening session on their joint proposed indoor sports complex.

Salango requested additional comments during last week’s Kanawha County Commission meeting as leaders continue to receive feedback on the facility, which would be located at the Charleston Town Center mall; the facility would be located at the spot of the former Macy’s store and the Lee Street parking garage. Proposed amenities include an aquatic center, basketball courts, an indoor turf field, a rock climbing wall and an elevated running track.

Officials held the first public listening session last Tuesday.

“We got a lot of really good suggestions,” Salango said. “The staff took all of those down, and the mayor [Amy Shuler Goodwin] and I and others will meet to discuss them.”

Salango understands the importance of public comments; he led the Kanawha County Commission’s efforts related to the Shawnee Sports Complex, the outdoor sports facility in Institute.

“When we were doing Shawnee back in 2017, the initial concept did not look like what it ended up looking like,” he said. “We didn’t have pickleball, we didn’t have basketball courts remodeled, we didn’t have a lot of things. Public input is very important, and we’re going to listen to it.”

Two more listening sessions will be held in Charleston, although Salango noted additional events could take place outside of Charleston’s city limits. The next scheduled listening session on Oct. 8 at 11 a.m. at City Center at Slack Plaza.