BEAVERTON, Ore. -- The Portland Timbers unveiled their brand new multi-million dollar practice facility Thursday morning in Beaverton.
“Beautiful,” said Timbers Head Coach John Spencer. “Merritt has put his money where his mouth is again and given us a tremendous facility to practice on.”
Spencer is talking about Timbers owner Merritt Paulson, who was also thrilled with the state-of-the art Adidas Timbers training center that features a 6,000 square foot indoor facility.
“It’s exciting,” Paulson said. “Certainly it’s going to help recruit players. This is the best grass field in the state. Hopefully, it’s a sign of big things to come.”
The Timbers have a grass field and a turf field side-by-side at the training center, which cost $6 million. It will become the team’s primary on-field training ground. There are also locker rooms, a fully-equipped training and fitness area, offices and a lounge for the players.
“It's a natural progression for any club in the world that wants to be talked about as being a very good club and a top club," Spencer said. "You’ve got to have your own practice facility."
The grass field is a combination of 75 percent perennial ryegrass and 25 percent Kentucky blue grass, which is a blend well suited for cool climates.
The facility was constructed as part of a ten-year partnership with the Tualatin Hills Parks & Recreation District. The Timbers will make an annual donation to the Tualatin Hills Park Foundation and will conduct a series of annual youth soccer camps and coaches' clinics at the center.
Tualatin Hills General Manager Doug Menke is thankful the public will be involved.
“As exciting as it is to see professionals at it," he said, "in about a month we hope to see young soccer players playing out on that synthetic surface. That’s the future.”
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