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4,000-Seat Arena Proposed for Milo-Grogan

Brent Warren Brent Warren 4,000-Seat Arena Proposed for Milo-GroganRendering courtesy of Rogue Fitness.
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Rogue Fitness is floating a plan to build a 4,000-seat arena on East Fifth Avenue in Milo-Grogan.

The main function of the facility would be to serve as a home for the Rogue Invitational, as well as a handful of other CrossFit events, such as those associated with the Arnold Sports Festival.

The arena would be located at 545 E. Fifth Ave., just north of the 600,000 square foot building that Rogue built in 2016 to house the company’s headquarters as well as its manufacturing and distribution operations.

The concept was presented to the Milo-Grogan Area Commission last week by a broker representing Rogue.

Ashley Felger Smith, a spokesperson for Rogue, confirmed that the company is proceeding with the proposal, although she stressed that a significant amount of planning remains.

“The Rogue Invitational and like events are the primary use of the facility,” said Smith. “The secondary use of this facility will serve as a recreation center and small restaurant center for our team to use during the day.”

The restaurant center could include lunch or coffee options and would be open to the public, she said.

As for other uses for the arena, Smith said that possibilities include “small concerts, Shakespeare, boxing matches or other cool small venue activities.”

Charles Thompkins, Chair of the Milo-Grogan Area Commission, said that most of the concerns raised at the meeting about the proposal were related to parking.

Although an adjacent lot serving the existing Rogue facility would presumably be available for arena patrons, no additional parking is being proposed, meaning that a zoning variance would be required before the development could move forward.

Thompkins said that the commission was told that a parking study for the facility is underway, and that Rogue is looking into the possibility of using nearby lots for event parking.

The arena would sit on the western portion of the land that Rogue controls along Fifth Avenue (across Fields Avenue from 5th Avenue Lumber), while the parcel at the corner of Cleveland Avenue would eventually hold separate commercial buildings, with a parking lot behind.

Smith confirmed that Rogue would own and operate the arena. As for the parking question, and a timeline for the project moving forward, she said that the company is “working through all the details now (and) will release more information when we have it.”

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