More than a year of negotiations between Stony Brook University and the Three Village Soccer Club have finally yielded a resolution acceptable to both sides, the university announced Monday.
Between the creation of new fields along Stony Brook Road and the refurbishing of existing fields, students participating in club sports will have double the space they previously had access to while the Three Village Soccer Club will have approximately the same amount of space it had before.
Also under the agreement, student fees will fund the improvement of fields used by the students, while the university will fund the renovation costs to create the new field space for the Three Village Soccer Club. State Sen. John Flanagan, R-East Northport, will also attempt to secure state funding for the project.
The duration of the permit, running through August 31, 2018, is "five years with automatic renewal for five additional years provided there is no cause for non-renewal," according to the university.
The two entities clashed publicly in November over field space issues, with the duration of the permit and the cost of funding the creation of new fields as central issues.
“We were very aware of the Three Village Soccer Club’s stake in this process and recognize our role as a partner in the community and how important it is to the Club, and by extension the community,” Stony Brook President Dr. Samuel L. Stanley Jr. said. “We want to welcome the community to enjoy the campus — without it being at the expense of our student needs and their campus life experience at Stony Brook.”
Derek Cope, president of the Sports Clubs Council and vice president of academic affairs within the Undergraduate Student Government, said in a statement that he is "excited and optimistic" about working together with the Three Village Soccer Club "as it will lead to a sense of community that exemplifies the ideals of teamwork, kindness, and leadership development.”
“I can say that without a doubt, sport clubs here at Stony Brook University are ecstatic to finally have access to quality field space that will meet the recreational needs of our growing student body,” Cope said.
The two entities have a relationship dating back to the 1980s, when the university first allotted space for the Three Village Soccer Club to use. Since then, soccer club administrators have said they have spent more than $1 million over the past three decades to build, maintain, and operate the current soccer park.
Mitch Pally, president of the Three Village Soccer Club, thanked Stanley and Assemb. Steve Englebright, D-Setauket, for their support during the negotiation process.
"The Three Village Soccer Club looks forward to an ever expanding relationship with the University," Pally said.
With the soccer season starting this coming weekend, Pally said this agreement comes exactly at the right time.
"We put a lot of work in the last couple of weeks, but we got it right and we got it on time," he said.
Pally called it "a very, very good arrangement for both sides" – even saying, "for lack of a better term, happily ever after."
"I think we came out of this with an arrangement that solves both sides’ needs and is something that will be a tremendous asset for this community," he said.