Site plan approved for athletic facility

SOMERSWORTH — Former Somersworth Middle School basketball coach and principal of New England Sports Hub, Craig Riotto has big plans to bring an indoor sports dome to his home city in 2022.

“I want to see the community with one of the most extraordinary indoor sports complexes in the country in their backyard,” Riotto said. “This will be a place with something for everybody. It’s something I wish had been built when I was growing up, but I am excited for young people like my son to grow up and have this opportunity just five to 10 minutes away.”

The inflatable dome is planned to be 135,000 square feet with about two football fields worth of field turf for year-round play in multiple sports for all ages. 

A rendering of what the proposed Sports Hub dome will look like when completed.

The city’s Planning Board unanimously granted a site plan approval Tuesday for the athletic and fitness facility, clearing the way for the project to move forward. The location is 165 Route 108, behind the Hilltop Fun Center, which has go-karts, mini-golf, batting cages and an arcade.

Riotto coached Somersworth Middle School basketball for six years, until he had to step down to focus on making this idea a reality. His vision is to turn the empty field and forestry behind Hilltop Fun Center into a 100-foot tall enclosed dome.

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