Storm knocks out East Hants Sportsplex dome for second time

A Halifax-area sports club is shuffling its schedule after losing its practice venue after the East Hants Sportsplex's dome collapsed during Thursday's stormy weather.

Suburban Football Club rents the turf four nights a week for three hours and about 15 teams use it for practice, said club president Peter Crowe, but they'll need to move their practices until the facility in Lantz, N.S., can reopen.

"We realize this is a major setback for our clients, the community and for the Sportsplex but we will be making every effort to be up and running as soon as possible," read a statement from the East Hants Sportsplex posted to Twitter Friday morning.

The damage to the dome is still being assessed, said general manager Scott Forward, but there is a significant tear in the roof.

"The snow and water load from the snow ... as far as we can tell, was the cause of the collapse," Forward said.

Multi-use facility

The dome is used for soccer, football, golf, baseball and any other sport you might play on an outdoor field, Forward said.

For the Suburban Football Club, moving practices to another facility means the teams will likely be practising indoors on gym floors instead of turf or grass, Crowe said.

"That's a big deal in terms of the training and the quality of the training that we can put on," he said.

Previous dome collapse

This isn't the first time the dome collapsed during a storm. It happened in March 2018 and was closed for two months.

Crowe said the time of year makes a big difference.

"In the wintertime we rely pretty heavily on indoor turf facilities, and those are limited in the Halifax region," he said. "It will have a bigger impact this time, to all the clubs that use the facility."

Forward said although the dome has collapsed before, it's never happened quite like this, and he doesn't know when it will be back up.