The old Starland amusement center on Route 53 was a landmark for generations of fun-seekers. Boasting go-carts, batting cages, a driving range and more, the beloved South Shore destination became tired in recent years. To passers-by, the wear was evident.
Today, under new ownership and sitting behind construction
fencing, lies the newly built, $16 million University Sports
Complex at Starland scheduled to open
Under the name Starland Holdings LLC, Norwell resident John Poirier and a group of investors purchased the 30-acre property in 2012 for $2.7 million.
The 180,000-square-foot, multi-use sports center will employ more than 200 full- and part-time staff, host summer camps and cater to a diverse sports clientele.
The training facility will offer clinics, educational programs and tournaments for athletes and non-athletes in basketball, soccer, lacrosse, football, volleyball, baseball, cheerleading, rugby and more.
Duxbury resident Jim Bunnell, the former executive director of the South Shore YMCA, is the general manager.
The 30-year sports and fitness industry veteran took on the University Sports Complex project earlier this year following the nonprofit's 2012 reorganization.
The sports complex will have a 132-by-40 yard indoor turf field, eight basketball courts with parquet flooring, a membership-based fitness center
, and an indoor track.
There will be four eateries: a sports
bar, cafes and a yogurt bar. In addition to the locker rooms and classrooms, there will be birthday and function room facilities
, a laser tag room and an arcade.
The original Starland building and outdoor fun park was leveled last week. The soon-to-be-constructed amusement area will be equipped with electric go-carts, bumper cars, computerized batting cages for baseball and softball, a rock climbing wall and a mini-golf course.
"Our goal is to earn the South Shore's credibility as a facility with the most dedicated, qualified staff to serve kids, families and groups and do so in a very professional, safe manner," Bunnell said.
"There will be a lot of options for families to recreate, participate in a program or class, work out or come together as a family at the fun park at Starland."
If you go
University Sports Complex at Starland
645 Washington St., Hanover
See video of the work on the project at