Owner of fieldhouse in Grand Park nears resolution with developer of $42M youth sports park in Auburn

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The owner of Pacers Athletic Center in Westfield is nearing a resolution to a lawsuit filed against its former operations chief and the developer of a planned $42 million sports park in northeast Indiana.

Grand Park Fieldhouse LLC filed a lawsuit in Hamilton County Superior Court in February, alleging that former president of operations Rodney Sinn improperly used confidential information from his time at the athletic facility in his new role as a principal with park developer Auburn Sports Group.

Sinn and Auburn Sports Group sought to have the case dismissed in late February, but asked the court to withdraw that request on Monday.

An order submitted to the court on Monday outlined an agreement between the plaintiff and the defendants that could lead to dismissal of the litigation.

Sinn and Auburn Sports agreed to cease using or referencing any confidential information related to Grand Park Fieldhouse, and to destroy or return any such materials. They also agreed to remove any reference to Grand Park Fieldhouse’s confidential information from marketing materials, business plans or any other related material.

If the plaintiff agrees that the defendants have complied with their part of the agreement, the litigation would be dismissed.

According to the lawsuit, Sinn served as president of operations at the facility from July 2015 to July 2016. The facility was formerly known as Jonathan Byrd’s Fieldhouse, but the title changed to Pacers Athletic Center after Pacers Sports & Entertainment acquired naming rights in 2017.

The athletic facility is located in Grand Park Sports Campus, which is owned by the city of Westfield. The facility is separately owned by Grand Park Fieldhouse LLC.

Grand Park Fieldhouse is an affiliate of Card & Associates Athletic Facilities LLC, which developed the facility.

Grand Park Fieldhouse said Sinn shared confidential information he obtained during his time in Westfield to entice third parties to invest in the Auburn sports park development. The suit alleges Sinn used “Grand Park’s confidential financial information, business plans and marketing strategies to plan, develop and market the Auburn Sports Park.”

Auburn Sports Group unveiled plans for the sports park in January. Designs called for 16 basketball/volleyball courts, a domed indoor facility, eight baseball/softball fields and three artificial turf soccer/football fields.

The developer said the facility, which would be built north of Fort Wayne near Interstate 69 on 170 acres formerly owned by Auctions America, could be operational by mid-summer and create 200 jobs.

Correction: An earlier version of this IIB story incorrectly said that Rodney Sinn had been employed by Grand Park Sports Campus. He was employed by Grand Park Fieldhouse LLC, which is separate from the youth sports park owned by the city of Westfield.

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